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Investigando il suono dei cieli: tra metodo scientifico e pensiero magico-simbolico

Stefano A.E. Leoni


In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries European scholars of natural philosophy often attempted to formalize music in apparently very different contexts. It is fascinating to follow the influence of magic and the symbolic on high culture, often resulting in controversies, and the fruitful critical reflections about the method of scientific inquiry. It is in this context that musicology becomes important, starting from the interdisciplinary musical treatises which were fashionable until the end of the seventeenth century. With regard to this specific issue, one can focus on points that link the history of scientific thought and the history of world-views to the field of music and to the possibilities of mythopoeic speculation of music, both used as a formalization of magicsymbolic universes, and as a dismantling of methodological (and ethical) rational models. This essay discusses, amongst others, Kepler, Mersenne, Fludd as writers that make extensive use of the meta-language of music to give shape to their, at times controversial, ideas.

Full Text:



Fludd, R. (1617), Utriusque Cosmi Metaphysica, Physica, et Technica historia, Oppenheim.

Kepler, J. (1619), Harmonices Mundi Libri V, Linz.

Kepler, J. (1622), Apologia adversus demonstrationem analyticam CL.V.D. Roberti de Fuctibus …, Frankfurt.

Kepler, J. (1858-71), Opera omnia (Ch. Frisch ed.), Frankfurt a. M., Heyder & Zimmer.

Lenoble, R. (1943), Mersenne ou la naissance du mécanisme, Paris, Librairie Philosophique J. Vrin.

Mersenne, M. (1932-88), Correspondance du P. Marin Mersenne, Paris, Presses Universitaires de France.

Mersenne, M. (1623), Quaestiones celeberrimae in Genesim, Paris.

Mersenne, M. (1636), Harmonie Universelle, Paris.

Rossi, P.A. (1981), “L’eclisse della ragione all’alba della scienza moderna”, in AA.VV., Miscellanea filosofica, 1980, Firenze, Le Monnier, 24-116.

Copyright (©) 2014 Linguæ & - Rivista di lingue e culture moderne – Editorial format and Graphical layout: copyright (©) LED Edizioni Universitarie


Linguæ & - Rivista di lingue e culture moderne
Registered by Tribunale di Milano (06/04/2012 n. 185)
Online ISSN 1724-8698 - Print ISSN 2281-8952

Dipartimento di Scienze della Comunicazione, Studi Umanistici e Internazionali: Storia, Culture, Lingue, Letterature, Arti, Media
Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo

Editor-in-Chief: Roberta Mullini
Editorial Board: Maurizio Ascari - Stefano Beretta - Antonio Bertacca- Tania Collani - Chiara Elefante - Marina Guglielmi - Maryline Heck - Richard Hillman - Reinhard Johler - Stephen Knight - Cesare Mascitelli - Sonia Massai - Aurélie Moioli - Maria de Fátima Silva - Bart Van Den Bossche 

Editorial Staff: Margaret Amatulli - Alessandra Calanchi - Riccardo Donati - Ivo Klaver  - Massimiliano Morini - Antonella Negri - Luca Renzi

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