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The Moral Culture of the Scottish Enlightenment – 1690-1805 - Yale Scholarship Online
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The Moral Culture of the Scottish Enlightenment: 1690-1805

Thomas Ahnert


In the European Enlightenments it was often argued that moral conduct rather than adherence to certain theological doctrines was the true measure of religious belief. This book shows that the characteristically “enlightened” emphasis on conduct in religion was less reliant on arguments from reason alone than is commonly believed. In fact, the champions of the Scottish Enlightenment were deeply skeptical of the power of unassisted natural reason in achieving “enlightened” virtue and piety. They advocated a practical program of “moral culture,” in which revealed religion was of central importanc ... More

Keywords: Enlightenment, Natural Religion, Christianity, Moral Culture, Moral Philosophy, Scotland, Eighteenth Century, Moderates, Orthodoxy, Presbyterianism

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780300153804
Published to Yale Scholarship Online: May 2015 DOI:10.12987/yale/9780300153804.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Thomas Ahnert, author
University of Edinburgh