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Enlightenment and the Republic of Letters at the Dublin Medico-Philosophical Society, 1756-1784
Scally, Rachael
The Dublin Medico-Philosophical Society was established by John Rutty, Charles Smith and others in 1756. It was a small, self-funded and self-selecting learned society, which met on a bi-monthly basis to present and discuss medical and scientific papers on new and improving subjects. This article examines the society and its connection to an Enlightenment and a cosmopolitan Republic of Letters. It investigates the society?s inauguration, membership, ideology and aims and considers how information was collected, produced and disseminated by its members. It proposes that the society was an improvement society, that wanted to improve Ireland by advancing organized learning and harnessing practical knowledge for the betterment of the nation. It contends that the society was a band of virtuosi, a talented and influential group of surgeons, physicians, apothecaries and clerics, who utilized the methodological and empirical approaches of the Enlightenment. It concludes that the Enlightenment was not only in Ireland but that Ireland, or more correctly Dublin, in the form of the Dublin Medico-Philosophical Society and its Irish scientific Republic of Letters, was also participating in the Enlightenment.
Keyword(s): medicine.; science,; the Republic of Letters; Enlightenment; The Dublin Medico-Philosophical Society
Publication Date:
2015
Type: Journal article
Peer-Reviewed: Unknown
Language(s): English
Institution: Trinity College Dublin
Citation(s): Rachael Scally, 'Enlightenment and the Republic of Letters at the Dublin Medico-Philosophical Society, 1756-1784', Graduate Students? Union of the University of Dublin, Trinity College, Journal of Postgraduate Research;14, 2015
Publisher(s): Graduate Students? Union of the University of Dublin, Trinity College
First Indexed: 2015-06-11 05:38:52 Last Updated: 2017-07-05 05:34:59