The Title Page of Leviathan, Seen in a Curious Perspective

Noel Malcolm

in Aspects of Hobbes

Published in print November 2002 | ISBN: 9780199247141
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597992 | DOI:
 The Title Page of  Leviathan, Seen in a Curious  Perspective

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  • History of Western Philosophy


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Presents an interpretation of the famous engraved title page of Hobbes's Leviathan, in which the ‘person’ of the state is depicted as a colossal figure composed of smaller individual figures. It argues that the origins of this design can be found in an optical device developed by the French scientist Jean François Niceron, which used a specially cut lens to create a single composite figure out of separate smaller figures; and it explores the significance of this for Hobbes's theory of ‘representation’.

Keywords: anamorphic art; Hobbes; Leviathan; Niceron; representation

Chapter.  17142 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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