Online Encyclopedia

CARTESIANISM

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V08, Page 90 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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CARTESIANISM. Bi8L10GRAPHY -I. Editions and Translations.--The collected works of Descartes were published in Latin in 8 vols. at Amsterdam (1670-1683), in 7 vols. at Frankfort (16971 and in 9 vols. byElzevir Germany. (1713) ; in French in 13 vols. (Paris, 1724-1729), republished by Victor Cousin (Paris, 1824-1826) in I1 vols., and again under the authority of the minister of public instruction by C. Adam and P. Tannery (1897 foil.). Theseinclude his so-called posthumous works. The Rules for the Direction of the Mind, The Search for Truth by the Light of Nature, and other unimportant fragments, published (in Latin) in 1701. In 1859-186o Foucher de Careil published in two parts some unedited writings of Descartes from copies taken by Leibnitz from the original .papers. Six editions of the Opera philosophica appeared at Amsterdam between 165o and 1678; a two-volume edition at Leipzig in 1843; there are also French editions, CEuvres philosophiques, by A. Garnier, 3 vols. (1834-1835), and L. Aime-Martin (1838) and CEuvres morales et philosophiques by Aime-Martin with an introduction on life and works by Amedee Prevost (Paris, 1855); CEuvres choisies (185o) by Jules Simon. A complete French edition of the collected works was begun in the Romance Library (1907 foil.). German translations by J. H. von Kirchmann under the title Philosophische Werke (with biography, &c., Berlin, 1868; and ed , 1882-1891), by Kuno Fischer, Die Hauptschriften zur Grundlegung seiner Philosophic (1863), with introduction by Ludwig Fischer (1892). There are also numerous editions and translations of separate works, especially the Method, in French, German, Italian, Spanish and Hungarian. There are English translations by J. Veitch, Method, Meditations and Selections from the Principles (1850-1853; 11th ed., 1897; New York, 1899); by H. A. P. Torrey (New York, 1892). II. Biographical.—A. Baillet, La Vie de M. Des Cartes (Paris, 1691; Eng. trans., 1692), exhaustive but uncritical; notices in the editions of Garnier and Aime-Martin; A. Hoffmann, Rene Descartes (1905); Elizabeth S. Haldane, Descartes, his Life and Times (1905), containing full bibliography; A. Barbier, Rene Descartes, sa famille, son lieu de naissance, &c. (1901); Richard Lowndes, Rene Descartes, his Life and Meditations (London, 1878) ; J. P. Mahaffy, Descartes (1902), with an appendix on Descartes's mathematical work by Frederick Purser; Victor de Swarte, Descartes directeur spirituel (Paris, 1904), correspondence with the Princess Palatine; C. J. Jeannel, Descartes et la princesse palatine (Paris, 1869) ; Lettres de M. Descartes, ed. Claude Clerselier (1657). A useful sketch of recent biographies is to be found in The Edinburgh Review (July 1906). IV. Science and Mathematics.—F. Cajori, History of Mathematics (London, 1894) ; M. Cantor, Vorlesungen fiber die Geschichte der Mathematik (Leipzig, 1894-1901); Sir Michael Foster, Hist. of Physiol. during the Sixteenth, Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries (1901); Duboux, La Physique de Descartes (Lausanne, 1881); G, H. Zeuthen, Geschichte der Mathematik im 16. and 17. Jahrhundert (1903) ; Chasles,Aperqu historique sur 1'origine et le diveloppement des methodes en geometrie (3rd ed., 1889). (W. W.; X.)
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