Following the revival of ancient skepticism in early-modern Europe, debates about the possibility of obtaining true and certain knowledge of the world took place not only in metaphysics and in the natural sciences, but also in history and other humanities. While seeking to comprehend their own place in the process of historical development, 18th-century historians attempted to reconsider the nature and the purpose of historical writing, in general. Simultaneously, historical scholarship drew critiques from new sources. Cartesians, Deists, and philosophical skeptics posed challenges to the reliability of the discipline. Even antiquarian scholars, influenced by the humanist tradition, began to doubt the veracity of ancient histories due to the paucity of documentary evidence and to the alleged unreliability of reputed authors such as Livy, Dionysius of Halicarnassus, and Plutarch. Consequently scholars began to re-examine their sources as they sought new foundations for true and certain historical knowledge.
Matytsin, Anton, "Pyrrhonism or Academic Skepticism? Friedrich Wilhelm Bierling’s ‘Reasonable Doubt’ in the Commentatio de Pyrrhonismo Historico (1724)" (2014). Sképsis 7(10): 128-140. Faculty Publications. Paper 9.