The baron Wilhelm Ludwig Gottlob von Eberstein was born in his estate in Mohrungen near Sangerhausen on 10 November 1762 and died there on 4 Febraury 1805. He spent the life of an aristocrat, a private scholar, but a very productive one, who remained in loose contact with the school he studied at, namely the University of Halle. Eberstein was not an original philosopher. What he said was taken from his mentor Johann August Eberhard. His merits lie in historiography, more specifically in a well documented doxographic account of German eighteenth-century logicians and metaphysicians: the Versuch einer Geschichte der Logik und Metaphysik bey den Deutschen von Leibnitz bis auf gegenwärtige Zeit (Halle 1794-1799), in two volumes, edited by Eberhard. For some reasons, Eberhard chose to immediately have Eberstein’s work reprinted with the rather different title of Versuch einer Geschichte der Fortschritte der Philosophie in Teutschland, vom Ende des vorigen Jahrhunderts bis auf gegenwärtige Zeit (Halle 1794-1799), with reference, this time, to eighteenth-century German metaphysics, rather than not logic. With its second title, which contains a reference to the prize-question proposed by the Royal Academy of Science in Berlin for the year 1791, the book took a prominent place in the polemic between Eberhard and Immanuel Kant on the issue of the ‘progresses of metaphysics’.
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