This chapter traces the beginnings of Enlightenment and the intellectual relationship between Scotland and America, along with Cadwallader Colden's role in the development of a transatlantic intellectual culture. It looks at various developments that helped to nurture an exciting age of international intellectual innovation, cultural experiment, and political transformation that began in the second half of the seventeenth century and lasted well into the nineteenth century. It considers Colden's view that the decline of Aristotelian scholastic tradition and development of new understandings of the natural world were important precursors to eighteenth-century intellectual culture. It also examines Colden's career choice, his use of enlightenment to reflect on life's meaning, and his role in the so-called Moderate Enlightenment during the first half of the eighteenth century.
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