Catalogue Entry: OTHE00021

Chapter 4: 'The Macrocosm.'

Author: David Boyd Haycock

Source: William Stukeley: Science, Religion and Archaeology in Eighteenth-Century England (2002).

[Normalized Text] [Diplomatic Text]

[1] By 1760 Stukeley's friend Emanuel Mendes da Costa was attributing 'the great decay (which I confess I think daily evident) of Litterary knowledge especially in regard to our study of Natural History' to 'the Vice of Systems continually making all over Europe'. Da Costa to Pierre Ascanius, 26 September 1760, in BL Add. MS 28,534 f. 96/130.

[2] Quoted from Cogitata et Visa in Rossi (1968), p. 187.

[3] Quoted in Frantz (1968), p. 15.

[4] Sprat (1667), pp. 155-6.

[5] See Ray (1704) pp. 188-92.

[6] In his Annals (1650), Ussher fixed the date of Creation at 4004 BC, a proposition given official Anglican sanction by being included in the Authorized Version of the Bible from 1701. Stukeley held a slightly longer chronology, writing, 'To the year 1751, 6464 years have elapsed, since creation', thus dating it to 4713 BC. SoA MS 806, note inside back cover.

[7] Quoted in Rossi (1984) p. 16.

[8] St Augustine The City of God, XVIII, 40, quoted in Schnapp (1996) p. 224.

[9] La Peyrère (1656) Proem, quoted in Schnapp (1996) p. 223.

[10] Quoted in ibid. p. 226.

[11] See his Lectures and Discourses on Earthquakes (1668); Rossi (1984) pp. 13-6.

[12] Stukeley FM MS 1130 Stu (1) f. 125.

[13] Quoted in Rossi (1984) p. 36.

[14] Quoted in Force (1985) p. 25.

[15] Halley (1724) p. 120.

[16] Stillingfleet (1709) pp. 337-9; on Stillingfleet's philosophy see Popkin (1971).

[17] Ibid. p. 241. John Woodward likewise believed that the Earth contained a massive reservoir or 'abyss' of water at its centre.

[18] Pemberton (1728) pp. 244-5. Pemberton and Newton believed it was necessary to explain the 'use of tails in comets', and that in their function of replenishing the water of planets they represented 'in the strongest light imaginable the extensive providence of the great author of nature' (p. 244).

[19] See Kubrin (1967); Rousseau (1987) p. 21.

[20] Halley (1724) p. 121.

[21] Whiston (1717) p. 147.

[22] Clarke (1716), p. 254.

[23] Edwards (1714) p. 79.

[24] Woodward (1729) pp. xiii--xiv.

[25] Quoted in Levine (1977) p. 95.

[26] See DNB.

[27] Stukeley (1980), pp. 120, 115: see Levine's excellent biography (1977).

[28] From The Spectator, quoted in Rousseau (1982) p. 202.

[29] Rossi (1984) introduction.

[30] See Force (1985) pp. 39-40, and Manuel (1974) pp. 35-7.

[31] Stukeley Bod. MS Eng. misc. e. 667/a f. 10; Stukeley SoA MS 331 a & b. According to the Journal Book of the Royal Society, this skeleton was shown on 12 February (not 7) 1719: Royal Society JBC. Vol. XI ff. 292-5. All the following references to this paper are from SoA MS 331 a & b.

[32] See Schaffer (1983).

[33] Stukeley SoA MS 331 a & b.

[34] See Rossi (1984) p. 93.

[35] Quoted in Thackray (1994) p. 128.

[36] Stukeley Royal Society RBC XV ff. 101-4.

[37] SS 2, pp. 353-4, diary, 13 November 1740.

[38] SS 3, p. 2, diary, 29 January 1741.

[39] 'The Philosophy of Springs & Fountains, Or a Theory of the Earth' (1757), CCCC. MS 623. Stukeley's most famous geological argument was his 1750 essay on The Philosophy of Earthquakes: see chapter 9.

[40] Stukeley (1753) p. 225.

[41] Browne (1983) p. 26.

[42] Keill (1724) p.21, pp. 178-9, quoted in Hunter (1981) p. 185.

[43] Stukeley Bod. MS Eng. misc. c. 30b f. 78.

[44] Ibid. f. 75.

[45] Stukeley Roy. Soc. MS 142 ff. 71-2.

[46] Stukeley FM MS 1130 Stu (1) f. 1

[47] Ibid. f. 2.

[48] Ibid. f. 5.

[49] Ibid.

[50] Ibid.

[51] Westfall (1980) p. 390.

[52] Stukeley FM MS 1130 Stu (1) f. 6

[53] Ibid. f. 10.

[54] Ibid.

[55] Ibid. f. 19.

[56] Edwards (1714) p. 75.

[57] Hutchinson (1724) p. 1. See Wilde (1980) p. 3; also Katz (1994) and Kuhn (1961).

[58] Wilde (1980) p. 7; this thesis has also been developed in Jacob (1986) and (1991). See also Stewart (1996) pp. 142-56. For an examination of the influence of Hutchinsoniainsim, which survived through until the nineteenth century, see Katz (1994) and Wilde (1980).

[59] Horne (1799) p.1.

[60] Stukeley RS MS. 142 f. 72. For a discussion of Newton and kabbalah, see Goldish (1994). Goldish writes: 'Rather than simply abandoning interest in it, Newton read the kabbalah seriously, cogitated upon it, and then integrated it into his thought in a completely different context' (p. 91). There is no reason to think Stukeley was aware of this relationship, however.

[61] William Jones, Memoirs of the Life, Studies, and Writings of the Right Reverend George Horne, DD (London 1795) pp. 36-7; quoted in Stewart (1996) p. 155.

[62] Porter (1977) p. 117. Porter adds that 'in significant ways' Stukeley was a beneficiary of the Enlightenment, but does not expand upon this remark to say how exactly.

[63] Newton New College MS II f. 238; see also Manuel (1963).

[64] Halley (1724) p. 00.

[65] See Browne (1983), pp. 18-22.

[66] See Lyon and Sloan (1981).

[67] The Monthly Review 56 (February 1777), p. 91.

[68] Anon. (1736) Introduction, 'The Cosmogony, or Creation of the World.' As well as reviewing all the ancient theories of the origin of the universe, this knowledgeable and extensive introduction also considered -- and countered -- the arguments of Spinoza, Descartes, Burnet, Whiston and the Preadamite theory.

[69] Newton (1721) pp. 377-8.

[70] Cheyne (1715) part 1, p. 42.

[71] Hales (1727) p. xxxi.

[72] Stukeley Bod. MS Eng. misc. e. 667/1 f. 12. An extensive draft of this essay is included in the 'Creation' MS. It appears that he seriously considered the essay for publication, and it went through a number of recensions over the following few years, existing in three drafts. See Stukeley FM MS 1130 Stu (1) ff. 51-67; Stukeley Bod. MS Eng. misc. c. 410 ff. 56-82, ff. 83-117, f.121, ff. 213-27; Bod MS Eng. misc. Top. Wilts. e. 6 f. 99 and f. 100.

[73] Stukeley Bod. MS Eng. misc. c. 401, ff. 56-7.

[74] Stukeley FM MS 1130 Stu (1) f. 65.

[75] Stukeley FM MS 1130 Stu (7) f. 1.

[76] 'Historia Coelestis', SoA MS 806 ff. iii--iv.

[77] Stukeley FM MS 1130 Stu (1) f. 60.

[78] Stukeley Bod. MS Eng. misc. c. 401 f. 61.

[79] Whiston (1696) p. 71.

[80] Newton Principia (1687, p.415) quoted in Manuel (1974) p. 31.

[81] Stukeley Bod. MS Eng. misc. c. 401 ff. 71-3.

[82] Ibid. ff. 79-80.

[83] Gregory (1715) pp. iii--iv, and xi. The book was first published in 1702 as Astronomiae Physicae et Geometricae Elementa.

[84] Stukeley Bod. MS Eng. misc. c. 401 f. 81.

[85] McGuire and Rattansi (1966) p. 115.

[86] Ibid. See Casini (1984) for a criticism of McGuire and Rattansi's thesis. Casini suggests Newton may have withheld publication to avoid becoming embroiled in the 'battle of the books': 'The classical Scholia, if they had been inserted in the Principia, would have carried the flavour of paradox' (p. 16).

[87] Fatio de Duillier to Huygens, quoted in Iliffe (1995), pp. 164-5.

[88] Conduitt in Keynes MS 130.

[89] Gouk (1988) p. 124.

[90] Dobbs (1991) p. 196.

[91] Roy. Soc. Gregory MS 247 f. 13.

[92] Stukeley (1743) p. 82.

[93] Stukeley FM MS Stu 1130 Stu (1) f. 54.

[94] This edition titled De Mundi Systemate Liber Isaaci Newton (London, 1728). See I. Bernard Cohen's 'Introduction' to the reprint of the 2nd edition of 1731, (London, 1969) for a discussion of the origins and translations of Newton's original manuscript (catalogued as MS Add. 3990 of the Portsmouth Collection, University Library, Cambridge) and the various editions published from it.

[95] McGuire and Rattansi (1966) p. 120.

[96] Gouk (1988) p. 120.

[97] Golinski (1988) p. 158.

[98] McKnight (1991) pp. 130-42; p. 143.

[99] Stukeley FM MS 1130 Stu (1) f. 130 and f. 48.

[100] See Cohen (1987) c. 6 'Kepler's celestial music'. Cohen notes that Newton does not appear to have read Kepler's work at first hand, and Galileo, who received copies of Kepler's books, did not refer to their laws nor accepted his arguments for elliptical planetary orbits or the moon as a cause of the tides, perhaps being sceptical of Kepler's numerological rather than 'scientific' method.

[101] Derham (1719) p. xlvii.

[102] Ibid. p. 35.

[103] 'Query 31', Newton (1721) pp. 379-80.

[104] Halley (1692) p. 575.

[105] See Halley (1691a) p. 572.

[106] Stukeley FM MS 1130 Stu (1) ff. 46-9.

[107] William Whiston Astronomical Lectures (London, 1715) pp. 41-2, quoted in Hoskin (1985) p. 81.

[108] Grantham MS f. 49r. For a full elaboration and analysis of this whole discussion, see Hoskin (1985).

[109] Hoskin (1985) p. 81.

[110] Quoted in Force (1990a) p. 58.

[111] Newton Yahuda MS 1.1, f. 14r.

[112] Stukeley FM MS Stu (1) f. 71. For an examination of the influence of Stukeley's antiquarianism of eighteenth-century ideas in landscape gardening see Haycock (1999).

[113] Stukeley Roy. Soc. MS 142, ff. 67r--68r.

[114] Ibid. ff. 68v--69v.

[115] Hoskin (1985) p. 86.

[116] Quoted in ibid. p. 85.

[117] Newton (1729) 2.389.

[118] Hoskin (1985) pp. 89-91.

[119] Stukeley Roy. Soc. MS 142 f. 69v.

[120] Ibid. f. 70.

[121] Quoted in Hoskin (1985) p. 96.

[122] Quoted in ibid. p. 100.

[123] Ibid. p. 82.

[124] See Stungo (1993).

[125] Stukeley RCP MS 340/16; all subsequent quotes from this source.

[126] Newton (1721) p. 381.

[127] RCP MS 340/16.

[128] Nichols (1782) p. 626. The lectures are published in Stukeley's Palaeographia Sacra (1763).

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