Leibniz and geography: Geologist, paleontologist, biologist, historian, political theorist and geopolitician

S. Elden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


This article discusses the way that the German philosopher and mathematician Gottfried Leibniz (1646-1716) made a number of significant contributions to geography. In outlining his contributions as a geologist, palaeontologist, biologist, historian, political theorist and geopolitician, it challenges the straightforward way he is read in geography. Particular focus is on his Protogaea, the Annales Imperii and the Consilium Ae- gyptiacum, respectively a pre-history of the earth, a chronology of German nobility in the Middle Ages, and a military-strategic proposal to King Louis XIV. Making use of contemporary debates about ways of reading Leibniz, and drawing on a wide range of his writings, the article indicates just how much remains to be discovered about his work.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)81-93
Number of pages13
JournalGeographica Helvetica
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes

Cite this