Spirit of the Laws
Published in 1748, condemned by the Catholic Church in 1751, Montesquieu's masterpiece, De l'Esprit des lois (Spirit of the laws) marked a turning point in the European Age of Enlightenment. It announced the new critical understanding of acquired knowledge that was also reflected in Buffon's Histoire naturelle (Natural history) and Diderot and d'Alembert's Encyclopédie (Encyclopedia). The depth of the analysis and the skill of presentation resulted in Montesquieu’s work having considerable influence on political thought in the 18th and 19th centuries. It is divided ...