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1558 CE – 1679 CE

Thomas Hobbes was born in the parish of Westport, near the town of Malmesbury in Wiltshire, England on April 5th, 1588.  His birth took place three months prior to the feverish high point of the Anglo-Spanish War, when the Spanish Armada launched towards England with aims of conquest and of gaining control over maritime trade routes.  Regarding the tumultuous and warring circumstances of his birth, Hobbes remarked, in his lyric autobiography, that, “My mother gave birth to twins: myself and fear.”  Indeed, fear would remain Hobbes’s enduring partner, factoring as an efficacious motive both in his life and in his political and moral theory.


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