Merian, Hans Bernhard

Merian, Hans Bernhard a noted philosopher, was born in 1723 at Lichstall, in the canton of Basle, where his father was a minister. After finishing an academical course of philosophical and philological studies, he became private tutor of a young Dutch nobleman. At the recommendation of M. de Maupertuis, Frederick the Great called him to Berlin. Here he became a member of the Academy of Sciences, and soon distinguished himself so much that in 1771 he was nominated director of the philosophical department, and in 1797 (after Formey's death) secretary of the academy. Of his numerous philosophical works, some of which show superior merits, we mention the following: Diss. de autochiria (Basle, 1740):-Discours sur la metaphysique (Basle, 1766) :- Systeme du monde (Bouillon, 1770): Examenn de l'histoire naturelle de la religion par Mr. Hume, ou on refute les erreurs, etc. (Amsterdam, 1779). Numerous philosophical essays of his are printed in the "Mem. de l'Acad. des Sciences a Berlin," e.g. Mem. sur l'apperception de sa propre existence; Menm. sur apperception consideree relativement aux idees, ou sur lexistence des idees dans l'ame (vol. v); Reflexions philos. sur la resemblance (vol. xii); Examen d'une question concernant a liberte (vol. ix); Parallble de deux principes de psychologie (vol. xiii); Sur le sens moral (vol. xiv) ; Sur le desir (vol. xvi); Sur la crainte de la mort; Sur le mepris de la mort; Sur le suicide (vol. xix); Sur le duree et sur l'intensite du plaisir et de la peine (vol. xii). For further details, see Fred. Ancillon, Eloge historique de J. B. Merian, etc. (Berlin, 1810).

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