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Varenius And His Family: A Dynasty Dedicated To Scholarship And Rooted In Christian Philosophy

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Chapter Summary

Bernhard Varenius was born into a family of Lutheran clerics, where in the direct line of five generations we find six theologians of whom four were also professors of theology. Although young Bernhard did not enjoy much direct continuity in his family because of the early death of his parents, he dedicated himself to scholarship like his forebears, but not to theology. He chose secular subjects where he thought his individual talents lay, mathematics, medicine, natural philosophy, and he had the courage to leave the established track and to look for something new without yet being certain where this route would take him. Varenius was captivated by his generation's fascination with mathematics, and his curiosity was equally roused by the 'special' phenomena accessible through experience. He was a natural philosopher firmly rooted in Christian theology.

Keywords:Bernhard Varenius; Christian theology; dynasty; natural philosophy; scholarship



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