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This paper discusses the contribution of Madame Du Châtelet to the reception of Newtonianism in France prior to her translation of Newton’s Principia. It focuses on her Institutions de physique, a work normally considered for its contribution to the reception of Leibniz in France. By comparing the different editions of the Institutions, I argue that her interest in Newton antedated her interest in Leibniz, and that she did not see Leibniz’s metaphysics as incompatible with Newtonian science. Her Newtonianism can be seen to be in the course of development between 1738 and 1742 and it was shaped by contemporary French debates and the achievement of French Newtonians like Maupertuis in confirming his theories. Her Institutions therefore is linked to the same drive to disseminate Newtonianism undertaken by popularisations such as Voltaire’s Elements de la philosophie de Newton and Algarotti’s Newtonianismo per le dame.Author Keywords: Emilie du Châtelet; Isaac Newton; Voltaire; French reception of Newtonianism
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DOI 10.1016/j.shpsa.2004.06.005
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References found in this work BETA

Madame Du Ch'telet's Metaphysics and Mechanics.Carolyn Iltis - 1977 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 8 (1):29.
Emilie du Châtelet and the Gendering of Science.Mary Terrall - 1995 - History of Science 33 (101):283-310.

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Citations of this work BETA

Du Châtelet on Freedom, Self-Motion, and Moral Necessity.Julia Jorati - 2019 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 57 (2):255-280.
Du Châtelet on Sufficient Reason and Empirical Explanation.Aaron Wells - 2021 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 59 (4):629-655.

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