Desgabets, Robert (1610-1678) - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Philosophy

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Matter, Substance, and the Cogito

In commentary published with his 1840 edition of the Commercy conferences, Victor Cousin noted that "if dom Robert, in metaphysics, is a disciple of Descartes revolting against all the principles of his master, he is not so in physics. There he is a faithful Cartesian" (cited in Retz 1887, p. 345). The fidelity to Descartes in physics is indicated in a 1666 letter to Clerselier, in which Desgabets criticized as schismatic the attempt of the French Cartesian Géraud de Cordemoy to introduce a version of Cartesian physics that posits indivisible atoms and the void. Desgabets also argued against the atomist admission of vacua by appealing to Descartes's claim in the Principles that matter by its nature occupies all imaginable space.

However, Desgabets went further than Descartes in connecting the claim that matter fills all space to the conclusion that this matter is "indefectible...

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This section contains 2,503 words
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Buy the Desgabets, Robert (1610-1678) Encyclopedia Article
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Desgabets, Robert (1610-1678) from Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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