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Topic: [HM] Does anyone recognize this description of Descartes?
Replies: 13   Last Post: May 15, 2002 8:00 PM

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Udai Venedem

Posts: 199
Registered: 12/3/04
Re: [HM] Does anyone recognize this description of Descartes?
Posted: May 6, 2002 7:52 PM
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Peter Flor's inquiry about the correctness in French of this piece:

> "En l'an de grâce 1619, dans un petit village de Ulm en
> Bavière, un jeune homme de 23 ans nommé René Descartes a
> eu une vision qui devait poser les fondements d'un nouveau
> monde, un monde où la raison triumpherait de l'ignorance
> et où la science remplacerait la simple croyance."

leads me to the following remarks:

1) "En l'an de grâce ..." intends to sound old fashion, sort of contemporary
to the subject, but unhappily the rest is far from this goal. Not counted
the fact that speaking of "grâce" is somehow delicate concerning Descartes:
it is not a word to be taken so easily.
2) indeed, the "petit village de Ulm" is not correct. I suppose it was to
mean "petit village près de la ville d'Ulm". If I trust my records, the
village-en-question was named Bre/da.
3) "a eu" is not at all in the mood required; we should read "eut".
4) the rest is far too emphatic and pompous, very much
rationalistic-19th-century-like, and so, in this context, if not a forgotten
Americanism, the old French "triumpherait" is perfectly anachronistic.

Udai Venedem

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