Descartes on Immortality Prior to 1640
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Early in the summer of 1629, six months after quitting Paris for the United Provinces of the Netherlands, Descartes wrote from Fraeneker in the north, where he had enrolled at the university, to Père Guillaume Gibieuf announcing the commencement of a long-term project, “a little treatise”, and reminding him of his undertaking to “correct and give it the finishing touches”.1 The interests of Gibieuf, a Doctor of the Sorbonne since 1611, were theological and metaphysical.2 It is likely, therefore, that the theme of the work for which Descartes had secured his services was, to borrow Baillet’s expression, “something concerning Divinity”.3
KeywordsHuman Soul Real Distinction United Province Latin Translation Finish Touch
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