In this cultural civil war [between ancient and modern learning], whose outcome carried the Western Civilization out of an Early Modern into a Late Modern chapter of its history, one of the signs of the times was the publication at Rotterdam, in A.D. 1695-7, of Pierre Bayle’s Dictionnaire Historique et Critique; for Bayle, the déraciné Southern French Protestant who had found his congenial second home at the meeting-point of an expanding Western World’s oceanic and inland waterways at Rotterdam, was one of the prophets of a Rationalism which was a revulsion from the Wars of Religion, and one of the founding fathers of a “Republic of Letters” which was a secular substitute for a lost Medieval Western Respublica Christiana, [footnote: An illuminating appreciation of Bayle’s personality, outlook, and work will be found in Hazard, P.: La Crise de la Conscience Européenne, 1680-1713 (Paris 1935, Boivin), pp. 101-18.] while Bayle’s dictionary was the parent of Diderot’s and d’Alembert’s Encyclopédie (editum A.D. 1751-65) [footnote: In eighteen volumes of text and four volumes of plates.] and thus the grandparent of all subsequent Western works of co-operative intellectual engineering […].
A Study of History, Vol IX, OUP, 1954