Alexander G. Baumgarten and the Lost Letters of Aletheophilus. Notes on a Mystery at the Origins of Modern Aesthetics

Alessandro Nannini


In this essay, I attempt to provide new insight into the last two Philoso- phische Brieffe von Aletheophilus, a moral journal edited by Alexander G. Baumgarten. My primary aim is to show that the journal, contrary to what has been hitherto unanimously stated by scholarship, comes to an end not in 1741, but in 1744. In the light of this new dating, I analyse the journal’s relationship with Baumgarten’s first collegium aestheticum (1742/43), some elements of which I try to recover indi- rectly. Lastly, I advance some hypotheses about the topic of the last letter of the journal, which is as yet completely unknown. 


Aletheophilus; Alexander G. Baumgarten; Moral journals; Aesthetics; Georg Fr. Meier

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