Hermann Lotze

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In existographies, Hermann Lotze (138-74 BE) (1817-1881 ACM) was a German philosopher, physician, and logician, noted for []


Lotze, in his writings, while seemingly on the side of theism and against materialism, while at the same time advocating some form of teleological mechanism, supposedly, blurred the lines between theism, pantheism, and atheism.[1]



Lotze influenced: Georg Simmel, George Santayana, Clarence Herrick, Lawrence Henderson, and Newell Sims.


Quotes | On

The following are quotes on Lotze:

“On the whole neither Goethe nor Lotze, nor indeed Mill, Spencer, or Comte, seriously modified the development of scientific thought, which now becomes our principal concern.”
Lawrence Henderson (1917), The Order of Nature (pg. #)
“It was the philosopher Lotze, I believe, who held that a thing is known by its activities. To determine how it acts through and through is, he declared, to arrive at a complete understanding of what it is. It would seem, however, that, contrary to the Lotzean point of view, the energies of a thing, provided they can be separately determined, furnish a better criterion of its nature than do its mere activities.”
Newell Sims (1924), Society and Surplus (pg. 3) [1]
Lotze is inclined to give old names to new things; he is fond of a metaphysical nomenclature, and his terms are generally more mysterious and old-fashioned than his ideas. Thus he speaks of the soul, of substance, of free will, of efficient causation, of a personal god; but these phrases stand in his system for comparatively modest and legitimate conceptions. The words may please us in themselves; but we shall be disappointed if we welcome the things for love of the names they bear.”
George Santayana (1971), Lotze’s System of Philosophy (pg. 153)[1]

Quotes | By

The following are quotes by Lotze:

“A thing is known by its activities.”
— Hermann Lotze (c.1842), Publication; cites by Newell Sims (1924) in: Society and its Surplus (pg. 3)[2]

End matter


  1. 1.0 1.1 Hermann Lotze – Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
  2. Sims, Newell L. (1924). Society and its Surplus: a Study in Social Evolution (pg. 3). Appleton and Co.

External links

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