Spinoza and Leeuwenhoek

kvond of the blog Frames/sing has an intensive look into the influence of optics on the metaphysics of Spinoza, who was a lens grinder by trade. Listed here, the articles in which he touches upon Leeuwenhoek:

Van Leeuwenhoek’s View of Technology and Spinoza – prospectively, a philosophical consideration of Van Leeuwenhoek’s refusal to show others his lenses, his methodology of examination and instrument design is put in relationship to Spinoza’s own likely merchant-class approach to optics and instruments. The powers of instrumentation and issues of specimen staging are brought together.

The Simple Microscope in the Hands of Van Leeuwenhoek and Huygens – A comparison between the rotary conception of the specimen viewing found in Christiaan Huygens microscope and the Van Leeuwenhoek idea of a ”staged”, fixed specimen, as it reflects a different idea of device and observation.

On the Issue of Clarity and Light: Van Leeuwenhoek’s Lenses – a 1685 quote by Thomas Molyneux is presented in support of the view that the lens polish of bead, single microscope lenses can have a determinative affect on distinctness and luminosity.


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