Descartes, Letter to Elizabeth

Descartes, Letter to Elizabeth - Correspondence between...

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Unformatted text preview: Correspondence between Descartes and Princess Elisabeth Ren Descartes and Princess Elisabeth of Bohemia Copyright 20102015 All rights reserved. Jonathan Bennett [Brackets] enclose editorial explanations. Small dots enclose material that has been added, but can be read as though it were part of the original text. Occasional bullets, and also indenting of passages that are not quotations, are meant as aids to grasping the structure of a sentence or a thought. Every four-point ellipsis . . . . indicates the omission of a brief passage that seems to present more difficulty than it is worth. Longer omissions are reported on, between [brackets], in normal-sized type. This version aims mainly to present the philosophical content of the correspondence; though after the philosophical content stops, a continuing dramatic trianglephilosopher, queen, princessis too interesting to pass up entirely. But much material has been omitted; it can be found in Lisa Shapiros informative edition (Chicago University Press, 2007). Titles and other honorifics are omitted; and Descartes will be made to use you and your where in fact he always used your Highness and she and her. Also omitted: the signing-off flourishesusually (from Descartes) your very humble and very obedient servant and (from Elisabeth) Your very affectionate friend at your service; and also, in some letters, a penultimate sentence whose only role is to lead into the closing flourish. Place: Elisabeth writes from The Hague in all her letters (with one exception) through vii.1646, from Berlin through 5 xii.1647, and then from Crossen. All of Descartes letters are written from Egmond (Holland) except for two from France in vii.1644, one from The Hague in 6.vi.1647, one from Paris vi.1648) and one last letter from Stockholm. Strictly speaking, Descartes lived and wrote at different times in two small towns called Egmond-something. First launched: October 2009 Contents Letters written in 1643 and 1664 1 Elisabeth writes on 6.v.1643: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Descartes writes on 21.v.1643: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Correspondence Ren Descartes and Princess Elisabeth of Bohemia Elisabeth writes on 10.vi.1643: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Descartes writes on 28.vi.1643: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Elisabeth writes on 1.vii.1643: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 The letters of xi.1643: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Descartes writes on 8.vii.1644: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .....
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