Digitized English Philosophical Texts

Thanks to digitization projects many philosophical texts are now available for free as scans. This gives us easy access to many unknown texts. The unknown texts are often undeservedly unknow. Historians of philosophy have often ignored texts which defend views which they do not like. Positivists and Marxists believe, or try to make other people believe, that more and more people believe that there is no God (atheism), that man has no soul (materialism), and that there are no objective values or duties (moral nihilism or subjectivism). Further, they favour non-precise, unclear philosophers over more academic, scholastic, argumentative philosophers. For example, historians of philosophy make people believe that German philosophy in the 19th century consisted mainly of German idealism, Nietzsche, Schopenhauer, and Feuerbach, while in fact Hermann Lotze, Bernard Bolzano, Franz von Brentano, and Herman Ulrici were amongst the best scientific (in the sense of the Latin ‘scientia’ and the German ‘wissenschaftlich’) philosophers of their time. All these four were theists and not materialists and thus neither 'modern' nor 'enlightened', and all of them are ignored by most historians of philosophy. Most of Lotzes writings were translated into English soon after their publication and were influential in England and in the USA. Today the writings of these four philosophers, as well as many other philosophical texts, are hardly known and out of print or available in print only in expensive editions.

However, now a large amount of philosophical texts which appeared before 1922 are available as scans in the internet. This is a valuable source of philosophical ideas and arguments for philosophical research. Contemporary philosophy forgot many insights, views and arguments which philosophers in the 19th and 18th centuries knew. We are producing a database of these texts with links to the sites where the scans can be downloaded. The growing list of German works is HERE, the list of English works is in preparation. For the search function Java must be enabled in the browser. Below you find information about how you can help to make this list grow.

Where can the scans be downloaded? The richest two sources are Google Books and the Internet Archive.

Advice on downloading scans from Archive.org

Advice on downloading scans from Google Books

Further sources of digitized books:

Here is the list of downloadable German philosophical books.
The list of English books will appear soon.

How can you help to make this list grow?

1. Download philosophical texts from Google-Books or other sites or scan books and upload them on Archive.org if they are not there yet. Three reasons for this: First, on Google Books it is difficult to find books. Second, sometimes books disappear from Google Books, and in the future Google Books might make free download impossible. Third, many books on Google Books cannot be downloaded outside the USA. Advice for uploading books to Archive.org:

2. Add philosophical texts that are on Archive.org to the German list or the future English list on this site. The list is created from this German bibtex file, here is the English bibtex file. (Latin books are added to the German file.) The bibtex files have been created with the free software Jabref. Create a bibtex file with the new entries and send them to me at epost@ABC.de (replace "ABC" by "von-wachter"). Note:

Notes on some philosophers

German philosophers are listed at scans.htm.

Robert Baronius

Professor in Aberdeen

Johannes Combach

Professor in Oxford.

Gilbert Jack (Jachaeus, Jacchaeus) (c. 1578 - 1628)

Scottish Aristotelian philosopher.

John Bramhall (1594-1663)

Kritiker Hobbes'.

Thomas Barlow (1607-1691)

Henry More (1614-1687)

John Wilkins (1614-1672)

Ralph Cudworth (1617-1688)

William Wollaston (1659-1724)

Thomas Halyburton (1674 - 1712)

Samuel Clarke (1675-1729)

Joseph Butler (1692-1752)

Thomas Reid (1710-1796)

George Campbell (1719-1796)

Richard Price (1723-1791)

James Beattie (1735-1803)

William Paley (1743-1805)

Dugald Stewart (1753-1828)

Thomas Brown (1778-1820)

Thomas Chalmers (1780-1847)

William Cunningham (1805-1861)