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Document Details :
Title: Matthias Knutzen, de eerste atheïst?
Author(s): D'HUYVETTERS, Karel
Journal: Tijdschrift voor Filosofie
Volume: 84 Issue: 2 Date: 2022
Wilfried Schröder proposes that Matthias Knutzen is the first atheist because he is allegedly the first person to have stated explicitly, in a printed document, that he does not believe in the existence of God. This critical study investigates Wilfried Schröder’s arguments and his use of the sources. It also analyses the three pamphlets, attributed to Knutzen by the German Christian theologian and apologist Johannes Musaeus. It concludes that the three pamphlets cannot be traced back to Matthias Knutzen, and that they could very well have been written by Musaeus himself, as part of a major apologetic mystification. A Dutch translation of the three texts is provided.