Authors
Aleta Quinn
University of Idaho
Abstract
William Whewell’s work on historical science has received some attention from historians and philosophers of science. Whewell’s own work on the history of German Gothic church architecture has been touched on within the context of the history of architecture. To a large extent these discussions have been conducted separately. I argue that Whewell intended his work on Gothic architecture as an attempt to (help) found a science of historical architecture, as an exemplar of historical science. I proceed by analyzing the key features of Whewell’s philosophy of historical science. I then show how his architectural history exemplifies this philosophy. Finally, I show how Whewell’s philosophy of historical science matches some developments in a science (biological systematics) that, in the mid-to latenineteenth century, came to be reinterpreted as a historical science. I comment briefly on Whewell as a potential influence on nineteenth century biology and in particular on Darwin.
Keywords Whewell  Historical science  Palaetiological science  Architecture  Systematics  Gothic
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DOI 10.1016/j.shpsc.2016.05.004
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Citations of this work BETA

Truth-Seeking by Abduction.Ilkka Niiniluoto - 2018 - Cham, Switzerland: Springer.
Whewell on Classification and Consilience.Aleta Quinn - 2017 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 1 (64):65-74.
When is a Cladist Not a Cladist?Aleta Quinn - 2017 - Biology and Philosophy 32 (4):581-598.
“I would sooner die than give up”: Huxley and Darwin's deep disagreement.Mary P. Winsor - 2021 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 43 (2):1-36.

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