Science, the Arts and Society in the Eighteenth-Century Dutch Republic

04 Aug 2017

In 1774, Petrus Camper, renowned throughout the eighteenth-century Republic of Letters as an anatomist, was involved in short-listing proposals for a new town hall in Groningen. The project would be beset by difficulties: in the declining years of the Dutch Republic’s international prestige, Orangist officials struggled to make ends meet. The work was abandoned in 1777. It resumed in 1793, only to halt for a second time when, in 1795, the French invaded. By this time, Camper, a lifelong Orangist supporter, was dead. As the essays in this volume show, Camper’s sympathies for both the Orangist regime and the official Reformed Church, and his interests in art and architecture, are relevant to our understanding of his anatomical renown, and vice versa.