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Pierre Bayle

Edited by Michael W. Hickson

Dialogues of Maximus and Themistius is the first English translation of Pierre Bayle’s last book, Entretiens de Maxime et de Thémiste, published posthumously in 1707. The two parts of the Dialogues offer Bayle’s final responses to Jean Le Clerc and Isaac Jaquelot, who had accused Bayle of supporting atheism through his writings on the problem of evil. The Dialogues defends Bayle’s thesis that the problem of evil cannot be solved by reason alone, but serves only to demonstrate the necessity of faith. In his Introduction to the Dialogues, Michael W. Hickson provides detailed historical and philosophical background to the problem of evil in early modern philosophy, as well as summary and analysis of Bayle’s debates with Le Clerc and Jaquelot.