Sir Thomas Browne (1605–1682) was an English writer, physician, and philosopher whose work has inspired everyone form Ralph Waldo Emerson to Jorge Luis Borges, Virginia Woolf to Stephen Jay Gould. In an intellectual adventure akin to Sarah Bakewell’s book on Montaigne, How to Live, Hugh Aldersey-Williams sets off not just to tell the story of Browne’s life but also to champion his skeptical nature and inquiring mind for our own age.
Mixing botany, etymology, medicine, and literary history, Aldersey-Williams journeys in his hero’s footsteps to introduce us to witches, zealots, natural wonders, and fabulous creatures of Browne’s time and ours. He reveals how Browne’s preoccupations—how to disabuse the credulous of their foolish beliefs, what to make of order in natures, how to unite science and religion—are relevant today.
In Search of Sir Thomas Browne is more than just a biography?it is a cabinet of wonders and an argument that Browne, standing at the very gates of modern science, remains an inquiring mind for our own time. As Stephen Greenblatt has written, Browne is “unnervingly one of our most adventurous contemporaries.” Download and start listening now!