Finally, then, physiogony is the inquiry into life "in degree.
But physiogony does separate out organic from inorganic nature, and it makes this distinction in part a historical one.
No longer defining them in pathological terms, physiogony reframes deformity and disease as resistances immanent to the historical unfolding of life.
The point is further sharpened by 1840, when the project of physiogony is explicitly defined as "exhibi[ing] nature as labouring in birth with man, and her living products as so many significant types of the great process, which she is ever tending to complete in the evolution of the organic realm" (VD 38).
Constructed out of the deformed and fragmented bodies of nonhuman creatures, nature's "abortions," physiogony offers a history of life fundamentally antagonistic to its central term.
For Coleridge--much of whose work in the 1820s is shaped by the idea of a physiogony (34)--the division between humanity and animality is just as important, but rather more fraught.
Physiogony may be, as Anthony John Harding describes it, an "attempt to show how the findings of contemporary science might support a philosophical account of a rationally ordered universe.
The separation of the spirit from the world of finite living things, which implicitly structures physiogony as a discipline, helps Coleridge realize that the spirit has a logic and reality all its own.
The ascending series of physiogony and the becoming potential outlined here give two different views of the same problem: the relation between spirit, or ideality, and material nature.
Green defines physiogony as a "history of nature" which, as "preface and portion of the history of man," makes the "knowledge of nature" a "branch of self-knowledge" and a part of the history of self-consciousness.
Beginning with physiography (Green's name for natural history), this scale proceeds to physiology or the study of the powers behind nature (or Naturphilosophie), and finally to physiogony as the imbuing of nature with historical purpose (102-3).
Or perhaps the history shadowed in this text through the development of freedom is a post-anthropological history that Schelling draws out of the physiogony of Robinet and Bonnet.