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Leibniz on Perfection

"God has chosen the most perfect world, that is, the one which is at the same time the simplest in hypotheses and the richest in phenomena…"

Thus wrote Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz, in his Discours de métaphysique (Discourse on Metaphysics), published in 1686. I encountered the quote in Neal Stephenson's The Confusion and had to look it up to be sure the words were in fact written by Leibniz and not by Stephenson (Leibniz is a character in Stephenson's historical adventures). Leibniz certain did write them, but in French, as "Dieu a choisi celuy qui est le plus parfait, c'est à dire celuy qui est en même temps le plus simple en hypotheses et le plus riche en phenomenes…"


Great quote. Even in English.

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