Antoine Le Grand (d. 1699) was born in Douai, northern France, but spent most of his life in England as a tutor and writer, becoming famous as the most prominent English Cartesian of the time. The reception of Descartes's philosophy in England was at first favourable, but it soon turned hostile. Le Grand sprang to Descartes's defence in a series of books written in Latin, three of which were later translated into English by Richard Blome and published as "An Entire Body of Philosophy according to the principles of the famous Renate Des Cartes" in 1694. The first book, "The Institution", sets out and explains Descartes's general theoretical principles in application to many and various fields; it has sections on logic, mind, matter, God and ethics, the four elements (earth, air, fire, water) and the human body. The middle book, "The History of Nature", reports a huge range of experiments and examples - in botany, zoology, meteorology, medicine, astronomy - which purport to show how Descartes's general principles can account for all phenomena in the natural world.
The final book, "A Dissertation of the Want of Sense and Knowledge in Brute Animals", supports the characteristically Cartesian claim that non-human animals are just complex machines without minds or souls or feelings of any kind.
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Number of pages: 804
Dimensions: 297 x 210 mm
Edition: facsimile of 1694 ed