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Published: 17 April 2008

384 Pages


ISBN: 9780199535750

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Natural Theology

William Paley
Edited by Matthew D. Eddy and David Knight

Oxford World's Classics

  • Paley's work of 1802 was hugely influential and still controversial, as we see a resurgence of interest in the theory of intelligent design and creationism.
  • Richard Dawkins's book The Blind Watchmaker famously takes on Paley to argue that the evidence of evolution reveals a universe without design: natural selection is blind.
  • This is the only edition of the original 1802 text, which is of particular interest on history of science courses.
  • The introduction explains how the book built on the early modern natural theology tradition and why it was so influential. Full notes offer further background on the key figures and ideas of the day.
  • Two appendixes on Paley's sources and an extended bibliography will be especially useful to students.