Lot 1028
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Discourse of the method to lead one's reason well, & to seek the truth in science. Plus the diopter. Meteorites. And geometry. When are tests of this method. Leiden, Jan Maire, 1637. In-4 (200 x 151 mm) of 78 pp., 1, 413 pp., 17, numerous woodcut vignettes and diagrams, 8 of which are full-page; set in old soft vellum. Original edition. the birth certificate of modern philosophy The Discourse of the Method is Descartes' first published work: an intellectual autobiography and programmatic text, it condenses the essence of his philosophical message. Divided into six parts, Descartes also gives his biography up to 1619 and examines William Harvey's recent discoveries on the circulation of blood. "An irremediable founder of a new vision of the world, Descartes brought the art of thinking to its peak, being the first to advance, clearing the way for philosophy, breaking and inaugurating" (Yves Peyré, In French in the text ). Overcoming the fears provoked by the condemnation of Galileo in 1633, Descartes wrote directly in French, in order to make his research and discoveries accessible to all: "And if I write in French, which is the language of my country, rather than in Latin, which is the language of my tutors, it is because I hope that those who use only their pure natural reason will judge my opinions better than those who believe only in ancient books". " Descartes had first thought of entrusting the printing of his treatise to the most famous printers in Amsterdam, the Elzeviers, who had made advances to him, and then to a Parisian printer under the direction of Mersenne. Eventually he dealt with the bookseller-printer Jean Maire, based in Leiden, where the volume was published anonymously on 8 June 1637, for a fee of only 200 author's copies. "It is no exaggeration to say that Descartes was the first of modern philosophers and one of the first of modern scientists; in both branches of learni
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