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<title> SUMMARY </title>In seventeenth-century English thought, Bacon and Hobbes offer two different ways of thinking about the architecture of sciences and the methods of acquisition of knowledge. Between these two thinkers is a different conception of the philosophia naturalis. This category involves logical and metaphysical matters: the definition of the demonstrative status of science; the function of «pure» mathematics in natural philosophy; the goals of the philosophia prima in the encyclopedia of sciences; the relation between facts and theories; the practical ends of science.In the recognition of possible Baconian influences, a difference is raised about the role of the ratio mathematicarum. According to Hobbes, mathematical reasoning is the fulcrum of the philosophy of knowledge and of nature, while for Bacon it has an 'ancillary' function with regard to the ars indicii as a method for the discovery of causes and forms of reality. Nevertheless, the Baconian bestowal of an «auxiliary» role to mathematics does not render quantitative reasoning less operative in experimental procedures of natural philosophy; Bacon takes the quantitative as a necessary condition for the control and the operative extension of experiment.

Affiliations: 1: Dipartimento di Filosofia, Universita della Calabria


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