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Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz

Leibniz, Gottfried Wilhelm von (1646–1716), German philosopher, historian, jurist, geologist, and mathematician, codiscoverer of the calculus, and author of the theory of monads. His discovery of the calculus was independent of, though later than, that of Sir Isaac Newton; it is the Leibnizian form that predominates today. He devised a calculating machine and a symbolic mathematical logic. His concept of the universe as a “preestablished harmony,” his analysis of the problem of evil, his epistemology, logic, and philosophy of nature place him in the foremost rank of philosophers and helped mold the German Enlightenment. His writings include New Essays on Human Understanding (1704), Theodicy (1710), and Monadology (1714).

See also: Calculus.

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