Descartes Critical And Interpretive Essays

Descartes Critical And Interpretive Essays-15
For instance, her father fought for King Gustav of Sweden, who was the father of Queen Christina, the patron of Descartes near the end of his life and a great inspiration to women intellectuals throughout the early modern period.Elisabeth’s maternal uncle was King Charles I of England, who was beheaded in 1649 during the Civil War and his struggles with Parliament.It was her last move to Herford that enabled her once again to create a rich and thriving community of intellectual and religious exiles.

For instance, her father fought for King Gustav of Sweden, who was the father of Queen Christina, the patron of Descartes near the end of his life and a great inspiration to women intellectuals throughout the early modern period.Elisabeth’s maternal uncle was King Charles I of England, who was beheaded in 1649 during the Civil War and his struggles with Parliament.It was her last move to Herford that enabled her once again to create a rich and thriving community of intellectual and religious exiles.

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Her father was Frederick V, Prince of Bohemia, and her mother, Elisabeth Stuart, was the daughter of James I of England.

Through her parents, she was connected to several of the most important events of the century.

These details are found in a letter that John Worthington sent to Samuel Hartlib in May of 1661 (Worthington 1847—, I: 311), which means that More’s anticipation of her visit was public knowledge to some extent.

Instead of moving with her mother to England in 1661, however, Elisabeth chose instead to move to Herford in Germany.

Life in The Hague turned out to be the first crucial stage of Elisabeth’s intellectual development, for she used this opportunity to shape a major intellectual community of exiles in The Hague.

For instance, in 1634, at the age of only sixteen, she arranged a debate between Descartes and a Protestant Scottish minister named John Dury.But Elisabeth was not content merely to play the role of a member of a royal household.From an early age, she took various measures to ensure that she would sit at the nexus of European intellectual life as well.“I have so far found that only you understand perfectly all the treatises which I have published up to this time…I know of no mind but yours to which all things are equally evident, and which I therefore deservedly term incomparable.” (1644), dedication to Princess Elisabeth.This was a fateful decision, as she became the Abbess of the convent there in 1667.This meant, as Carol Pal remarks in her , that Elisabeth would become the Calvinist leader of an abbey in Lutheran Germany harboring religious exiles such as Quakers and Labadists.Elisabeth’s cousin was crowned King Charles II of England in 1660 after the Civil War had ended and the monarchy was restored.Indeed, in 1649 alone, Elisabeth and her family were involved in two of the most momentous events in the whole century: through her brother, she was connected to the eventual development of the peace treaty of Westphalia, which ended the Thirty Years War; and through her mother, to the execution of Charles I that same year (in February).She was known alternately as a great intellectual, a philosopher, a “Cartesian Princess,” and a political figure.With familial connection to Prussia and England, her family placed her at the very center of European political life in the 17 century.

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