He was one of a number of surviving children two siblings and two half-siblings. His father was a lawyer and magistrate, which apparently left little time for family. For the history and the text of his thesis, see the following supplementary document: It is not known what his duties were exactly, though Baillet suggests that he would have very likely been drawn to what would now be called the Corps of Engineers Baillet, Livre 1, Chapitre 9, p.
In Discourse on the MethodDescartes recalls, I entirely abandoned the study of letters. Resolving to seek no knowledge other than that of which could be found in myself or else in the great book of the world, I spent the rest of my youth traveling, visiting courts and armies, mixing with people of diverse temperaments and ranks, gathering various experiences, testing myself in the situations which fortune offered me, and at all times reflecting upon whatever came my way so as to derive some profit from it.
Given his ambition to become a professional military officer, inDescartes joined, as a mercenarythe Protestant Dutch States Army in Breda under the command of Maurice of Nassau and undertook a formal study of military engineeringas established by Simon Stevin.
Descartes, therefore, received much encouragement in Breda to advance his knowledge of mathematics. Together they worked on free fallcatenaryconic sectionand fluid statics. Both believed that it was necessary to create a method that thoroughly linked mathematics and physics.
While within, he had three dreams  and believed that a divine spirit revealed to him a new philosophy.
However, it is likely that what Descartes considered to be his second dream was actually an episode of exploding head syndrome. Descartes discovered this basic truth quite soon: He visited Basilica della Santa Casa in Loreto, then visited various countries before returning to France, and during the next few years spent time in Paris.
It was there that he composed his first essay on method: Descartes returned to the Dutch Republic in In Amsterdam, he had a relationship with a servant girl, Helena Jans van der Strom, with whom he had a daughter, Francinewho was born in in Deventer. She died of scarlet fever at the age of 5.
Nevertheless, in he published part of this work  in three essays: The first was never to accept anything for true which I did not clearly know to be such; that is to say, carefully to avoid precipitancy and prejudice, and to comprise nothing more in my judgment than what was presented to my mind so clearly and distinctly as to exclude all ground of doubt.
In he published a metaphysics work, Meditationes de Prima Philosophia Meditations on First Philosophywritten in Latin and thus addressed to the learned. InCartesian philosophy was condemned at the University of Utrecht, and Descartes was obliged to flee to the Hague, and settled in Egmond-Binnen.
Descartes began through Alfonso Polloti, an Italian general in Dutch service a long correspondence with Princess Elisabeth of Bohemiadevoted mainly to moral and psychological subjects.
This edition Descartes also dedicated to Princess Elisabeth. In the preface to the French editionDescartes praised true philosophy as a means to attain wisdom. He identifies four ordinary sources to reach wisdom and finally says that there is a fifth, better and more secure, consisting in the search for first causes.
She was interested in and stimulated Descartes to publish the " Passions of the Soul ", a work based on his correspondence with Princess Elisabeth.
There, Chanut and Descartes made observations with a Torricellian barometer, a tube with mercury.Early life René Descartes was born on March 31, , in La Haye, France.
His father, Joachim, served in the Parliament of Brittany, France. Jeanne Brochard Descartes, his mother, died in a Dutch mathematician, who encouraged Descartes to begin writing scientific theories on mathematics and music. Died: Feb 11, Philosopher and mathematician René Descartes is regarded as the father of modern philosophy for defining a starting point for existence, “I think; therefore I am.” Early .
René Descartes: Rene Descartes, French mathematician, scientist, Early life and education. Although Descartes’s birthplace, La Haye (now Descartes), The Basics of Philosophy - Biography of Ren Descartes; MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive - Biography of Ren Descartes.
We would like to show you a description here but the site won’t allow us. Versions of the Gauss Schoolroom Anecdote Collected by Brian Hayes (with a lot of help from my friends) Transcribed below are tellings of the story about Carl Friedrich Gauss's boyhood discovery of the "trick" for summing an arithmetic progression.
René Descartes (–) was a creative mathematician of the first order, an important scientific thinker, and an original metaphysician. During the course of his life, he was a mathematician first, a natural scientist or “natural philosopher” second, and a metaphysician third.