Girolamo Cardano and Julius Caesar Scaliger in Debate about Nature’s Musical Secrets
Abstract

This article examines the theories of the power of ancient music and the superiority of the sense of hearing proposed by Girolamo Cardano in his De subtilitate and Julius Caesar Scaliger’s critique of these views in his Exercitationes exotericae de subtilitate. Despite Scaliger’s rejection of Cardano’s claim that he had successfully revealed the "subtle" nature of the sense of hearing and the innate harmony between music and the passions, both thinkers are shown to conduct their debate in one and the same inherited discourse in which new theories were shaped about music, what it does, or what it should do.


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