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Volume 1, redone Dec. 2014


Volume 1


Orest's Pages

Patricia's Musings



Musical Rhetoric

Transcribed Sources


"Les Fonds de Tiroir"

Usually given a negative connotation, in this case the pre-title I have chosen here must be seen as positive and enlightening. Written for a conference held in Leiden, this lecture fell on ears attuned to a different music, perhaps a music whose baseline was a less civic Humanism.

I put it on our site, not for itself, but for Gérard Defaux's criticisms. This piece will never be revised; let us have it, warts and all, with Gérard's suggestions, which will be shown within square brackets and in Roman italics]. His learning and honesty must be remembered and celebrated.


The Civic in Civic Humanism

In the Europe of the 1520, the habit of creating new words, and of giving new meanings to old words, was far less strong than in the late twentieth-century. The recovery of antique meanings, especially for religious and juridical words, could sometimes have momentous effects, to the point of shaking and rending asunder venerable and sacred institutions. The absence of functionalist sociologies -- so powerful in the twentieth century and so destructive of understanding the power of words -- made the effects of new words on the political and religious orders all the more potent.
The words "state," or stato in Italian, and especially as employed by Florentine diplomats; the word "Humanist," again as used still mostly by learned Italians and Netherlanders, had a really quite new meaning, like "state," for an old word. Similarly, the phrase "republic of letters," in Latin, and "utopia," an ancient Greek word revived and given new meaning by Thomas More, would have rich and complex futures. If we stop to think of how the history of these four words/phrases would frame so much of the history of relations between men of learning and men of power over the next two centuries, it is essential to reflect on each, not to suggest that the meanings alone of words make their history, but as markers, as signposts of continuities and changes over time.(1 )

Continuities, yes, especially on the side of the men of learning. Neither the words "republic of letters," nor the More's word "utopia," would be especially productive of institutions able to sustain their members materially or spiritually. There was a sense of synchrony in both -- cultural and religious spaces -- like refuges -- sources of inspiration like Ancient Rome, the exception being Erasmus and the Erasmian moment which gave almost institutional force to the words "Humanist" and "republic of letters." But in the main, community, peace and not a few celestial connotations would cross the minds of those men of letters who, in their correspondence, wrote the words "republic of letters" and "Humanist."

Not so for stato. The older, Northern-European meanings were static as well, but not the Florentine meaning, which stressed instability and either winning and increasing, or losing and declining. Stato was something that prompted constant reassessment -- an anxiety-producing word. As it became associated with the older political terms "monarchy," "empire" and "republic," the word stato would stimulate reflection, evaluation and assessment by rival states and other political institutions. By 1700 it would have coercive force [underlined by GD], so much so that it justified the destruction of ancient laws and customs.

Europeans in 1500 still had a very superficial conceptual frame for understanding political institutions. [de Seyssel?] The one, the few, and the many of Aristotle's Politics -- even when translated and with over 1000 new words created to do so by Nicolas Oresme -- remained vague as to the delegation and representation of powers.(2) Indeed, by his silence on the subject, Aristotle and his commentators could let readers believe that, beneath monarchies, oligarches and republican officials, powers remained the same and had similar consequences for daily political life. True, again the Florentines, and Bruni in particular, began the long and complex process of articulating social, cultural and even psychological differences between life in an oligarchical republic and in a monarchy(3) -- a process that would only be fully articulated in the libertarian [-- et la Boétie?] and anti-slavery movements of the eighteenth century.

In fact, the distinction between household [domus] and polis, so important to Xenophon and Aristotle, was probably more revealing of differences in the political structures of the various governments than were the differences between monarchy and oligarchy. The distinction would be used to exclude women from councils and other offices, while in European monarchies the household government under privy seals would always seem to grow jurisdictionally at the expense of the constituted offices of judge, councilor and treasurer.4 The men of learning in the sixteenth century navigated easily through officially constituted offices (More, Budé, de Thou) and household duties such as tutor and secretary, but household duties were generally what they preferred, being closer and occasionally offering possibilities of being intimate and friendly with men of power. Humanists frequently expressed disdain for local politics of city, diocese and province, preferring instead, through their learned fields of vision, to behold the imperial, papal or royal gaze.(5)

Under the wonderful rubric "reform," Francis I, Henry VIII and Charles V -- and most of their successors -- would undermine the rights and duties of older corporations of officials, by creating and imposing more powerful ones that pumped monies from subjects into armies, fortifications and cannons. The increase in the number of officials and the growth of state power was phenomenal, and it generally escaped the vision of the learned -- all the way down to Louis XIV and William III. Keeping the stato, maintaining royal-imperial reputations, and the sheer increase in the powers of government certainly made the men-of-power side of the balance between men of learning and men of power more dynamic, changing and brutal.

Would a historical taxonomy of the men of power be useful for understanding their relations with men of learning? Some were more open to encounters than others; princes, great aristocrats, prelates, chancellors, city fathers: all prompted imaginary dialogues and inspired reflection on the part of the learned -- reflections grounded on hearsay, historical ideals of life (the phrase is Huizinga's (6) ), and very little fact. The same metaphors may be found in 1700 as in 1500, the major example being "the prince lacks the leisure to read, so I shall summarize or analyze for him." The personalities of the powerful probably affected creative and learned experience less than the dedications assert.

Turning to the men of learning, it is important to note the exceptional, almost universal, quite rigorously programmatic Erasmian moment. His Italian predecessors, notably Poggio and Valla, certainly understood their learning to be of benefit to humanity, to Tuscany and to Christendom: but they never had the sense of mission that the Rotterdammer would develop in the first three decades of the sixteenth century on behalf of bonae literae. This difference between Erasmus and the great Italian Humanists is only partially explained by the inchoate and atomized character of Italy on the one hand, and the complex relief of Hapsburg imperial power in a quite inchoate and vast Holy Roman Empire. The Erasmian mission, and the critical distance from and rapprochement to all the great powers in Europe, can only be understood by the force of his personality in the service of learning, God and legitimate spiritual and political authorities. For Erasmus, the republic of letters -- he did not often use the expression -- was a program of Christian learning and pedagogy.(7) And, of course, [This already was true of all men of learning under Louis XII] some of the first and most important students were princes. When Thomas More, ["the King's good servant, but God first". Cite Gadoffre's book (8)] his friend and companion in the Humanist program, accepted an office in Henry VIII's government, Erasmus wrote him: As to your being attached to the court, there is one thing that consoles me; you will be taking service under an excellent prince. But there is no doubt that you will be carried away from us and from literature."(9) This almost 'who is not for me is against me' view of the relations between the learned and the powerful would not be characteristic of those relations across the next two centuries.

By the 1530s, clouds had already begun to appear on the horizon of Humanist learning and pedagogy. The contestation over and secularization of religious reform movements would only exacerbate matters. The links between learning and religious reform became strained as religious differences prompted questioning of -- and, soon, attacks upon -- legitimate church and state authorities. Eruditio ceased to be unidirectional, to the delight of the theologians and philosophers whom Erasmus and other Humanists had perceived as enemies of the new learning. Unity in learning had never really been more than a rhetorical surface, and Erasmus realized this. In his will of 1527 he listed persons who were to be given copies of his publications.(10) This list reveals how restricted the number of scholars in his movement had become for him. No one in France -- not even Budé -- appears on the list. While Budé [underlined by GD, with this comment: Erasmus was jealous of Budé's expertise in Greeek! and Budé did not oppose the catholic reactions of 1535] recognized the desirability of joining the "head and the members" of France and the Holy Roman Empire, did this chicanery that almost justified war while still being in favor of peace lead Erasmus to conclude that this particular royal councilor, Budé, would never be faithful to the critical intellectual and psychological distance between men of power and men of learning maintained by Erasmus and his followers? (11)

Turning now to the structural relations between the learned and the powerful, there were five institutional-official relations (a fifth would be added after 1660): 1) tutor for the children [underlined by GD with this comment: Lefèvre] of the powerful and for young princes; 2) councilor and officer in government; 3) jurist in the service of legitimate authority; 4) writer-propagandist, sometimes as historiographer, librarian [Lefèvre] or courtier [or valet de chambre]; and 5) chapelain and confessor. [Cf. Claude Chappuys, valet de chambre, Discours de la Cour (1543)] I lack the space to give examples of these five structural relations, but throughout the period, and beyond, they may be discerned in the careers of the learned. The sixth structural relation -- that of natural philosophical researcher -- has older beginnings, but after 1660 it became so strong and explicit in the learned societies and academies that it must be considered as different from learned research into ancient Roman military technology, or even from physics as Galileo practiced it. State officials integrated the natural sciences into the equation of interstate power relations: earlier the precious matter had been the learned person, but after 1660 it is much more his discoveries and his success in administrating research programs. [No mention of the creation of the Collège des Lecteurs Royaux in 1530?] The awareness of service, and some sort of political engagement less sacred than the life of erudition and of pedagogy, would not be lost. The Scaligers, Lipsius, the great jurists Cujas, Selden and Pasquier echo the distinction, as would the Dupuy brothers12 and Bacon; but in the meantime the republic of letters slowly came to be understood as a jurisdiction (almost) for judging scholarly and poetic-eloquent works. This did not mean that it was somehow more secular or lay, no indeed. But after 1660 the notion of the judgment of the republic of letters would develop more strongly as well, making it a complement to the Pantheon and to immortality through attaining glory. [Livre de J.C. Bonnot sur le Panthéon et les grands hommes] As early as the Ciceronian debate, which offered the learned choices between authenticity and primitiveness versus perfection through civic action (Homer vs. Cicero, reference to the republic of letters as an eventual literary-scholarly jurisdiction began to appear.13 The men of power -- kings, princes and patricians -- took no notice. It mattered little to them that true and perfect eloquence and republicanism were now linked.14 The relation between Virgil and the Principate would become a stronger exemplum, but fitting the world of Augustus into the Aristotelian forms of government would take time, and a clearer articulation of the notion that "mixed government" is more perfect than any other -- a quite English particularity.(15 )

As the learned began to realize that eruditio would not yield single answers on matters of doctrine, and as men of power and some of their learned councilors assumed Erastian [?] views while appropriating Church property, the choices between Erasmian [Erastian and Erasmian are circled by GD and connected by a line] service to Christ alone, and state service became more complicated as a result of the rise of new universities. It would not be easy for Protestants to "capture" one of the older universities; nor, as Protestant sectarianism quickly became so strong, could the learned retain the personal autonomy that was part of the Erasmian model. The new German universities -- Marburg, Königsberg, Jena, Helmstadt, etc. -- all had strong princely protection. Humanistic scholarship would be diffused in, and through, every religious tendency -- a Pandora's box which opened more political choices to all, but also more strident rules for political loyalty. The relation between urban governance and choice of faculty would occasionally lead to a pluralism of creeds and scholarly approaches, with Strasbourg setting an example for a time, and Leiden constituting an illustrious example of longue durée.

The Scaligers, father and son, would be revered, hated and sometimes even refuted as the greatest scholars of their decades; but in point of fact their writings did less to shape the learneds' political thinking about the state than did the writings of Lipsius and Montaigne.(16) Humanists from the beginning had vacillated between searching for some sort of spiritual-political intimacy with the powerful [underlined by GD with the comment: Not enough] -- not unlike what a clerk or a secretary felt in the service of a prelate -- and hoping for and celebrating withdrawal into the contemplative life. In the later decades of the sixteenth century, these same cultural-psychological options confronted the generation of learned during the religious wars and the wars of independence in the Low Countries.

Montaigne always answered his sovereign's call to duty; but for his true, deep search for answers to the human condition [not exactly], he withdrew [circled by GD with the comment: not exactly] to reading, contemplation and writing in his tower. The Essays do not urge the reader to follow his example, but instead to question the power and dangers of using words that express any and all creeds. Not silence, not withdrawal [better] but reflection, attention, moderation and skepticism about categorical claims. His thousands of readers and followers might not have grasped the critique of the dangers of ancient Roman republican eloquence -- it led to murder, conquest and violence -- but his thought dampened enthusiasms of every type.(17) For Lipsius, neither withdrawal nor full and total adherence to any political or religious order was possible. His evolution in thought, his active scholarship in service, particularly about ancient military institutions, and his ever-deepening understanding of Tacitus led to a nearly complete restatement of later Roman Stoicism, a philosophy of intelligence in and through the political, and a pessimism about achieving social order and stability. Lipsius's activism was full of risks : joining the Hapsburg side in 1591 certainly threatened his attempt to understand the present by fitting it into the past.(18) His military recommendations consisted not only of pedagogy (in the famous metaphor of the contubernium, the classroom becomes the commanding officer's tent) but also of a proposal for a standing army of citizens -- not mercenaries, and not Machiavelli's impromptu citizen army.(19) And building on what Botero had already attempted to demonstrate, he found no correlation between the liberty of republican citizens and imperial conquest.(20)

How do Montaigne's and Lipsius's views complement each other? [Tu cites toujours secondary sources (un filtre) pourquoi pas Montaigne? Rabelais? Marot? La Boétie?] The attempt by Bordeaux's former mayor to throw cold water on over-excited, eloquent republican and religious fanatical politics and preaching, must be seen in relationship to Lipsius's writing of history : for when Lipsius attempted to press the present into the vocabulary of the past, the result was not only understanding but hesitation and serenity. His history is like a lieu de mémoire: quieting. And the men of learning who read Tacitus and Seneca sensed an obligation to state their views on the arcana imperii, on dissimulation, and on lying, the ethical cutting-edge of state-building in the later sixteenth century. In general, the learned as diverse as Bodin, Montaigne, Lipsius, and Bacon granted special powers to sovereigns and justified it to accord with their general philosophical views.(21)

Advocate that he was, Bodin could scarcely conceive of distancing and disengagement; his response to the deepening civil and religious strife was to apply his scholarship to immediate needs for stability. Like Lipsius's decision of 1591, Bodin moved to construct a theory of republic that was grounded on the literalism of early Humanism, a historical and philosophical atticism. The theory of sovereignty that he constructed for the state totally undermined any studied vagueness in interpreting the powers held by the one, the few, the many.(22) The coupling of sovereignty in one legal, fictional person would quickly be combined with a theory of divine right -- thereby setting the terms of political order from Scotland to Spain, Naples and the southern New World. Princes did not need the theory -- and probably never knew of it -- but its diffusion among men of learning all over Europe made it very influential across the seventeenth century.

Not just war, civil war and religious division would deeply influence scholarly work; reform impulses in Roman Catholicism, sustained by venerable institutions giving them enormous strength, would unleash a repressive climate. Persecution for adopting natural scientific views (usually anti-Aristotelian), and censorship of non-orthodox thought of every type, increased as medieval philosophical systems that had earlier sustained the faith become restated, rhetorical, enriched, enforced by the powers of faculties and church and secular courts.(23) Mention must be made of Bruno and Galileo, for their careers became known and profoundly influenced the political thinking of the learned all over Europe. Claims to not only have the faith but to know astronomy, physics, ethics, jurisprudence and, later, geology, brought the Tridentine Church into conflict with the learned for so many non-religious reasons. Universalist claims would be a flail for the Church, as they would be for the imperializing monarchies; the not inconsiderable paranoia of many of the learned who were caught in religious conflicts, worsened as censorship and the administration of permissions for publication evolved from the haphazard to the systematic.(24)

As a young would-be soldier wandering about, Descartes had earlier thought of taking up residence in Italy. Even prior to Galileo's difficulties, the Inquisition and French authorities certainly influenced Descartes's choice of the Netherlands, thus revealing the structural continuities between the learneds' need to pursue their quest for knowledge, as unfettered as possible by religious and political institutionalized conformism, especially in regard to publishing scientific writings.(25) Like Erasmus, Descartes also made at least one move that was influenced by the need to be close to his printer -- a continuity that can be also found among the learned in the Protestant diaspora after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes in 1685.

Hoping that his works would be accepted by his Jesuit teachers at La Flèche, and through them integrated into the ratio studiorum of the French collèges, Descartes learned the hard way about the near monolithic force of restated Thomistic theology and Aristotelian natural philosophy. Sure enough of himself, he published and -- again not unlike Erasmus -- quite consciously curried a movement, a discipleship. Descartes remained true to the pedagogical dimension of the Humanist program that had been so important to Erasmus, Vives and More, although the content differed when Descartes taught math to a peasant youth, engaged in learned correspondence with a Rhineland princess and entered the service of a converted Swedish queen.

The shadows of institutionalized religious powers grew stronger from the 1570s-80s onward, leading men of power to devalue and depersonalize relations with the learned. Christina of Sweden and Louis XIV would be more like sixteenth-century princes than their contemporaries, still seeking to lure scholars to their service. Emperors Leopold, Ferdinand II, and Philip IV, and king Charles II and William and Mary rarely entered the competition to lure to their libraries a scholar of high repute. In fact, princes (to say nothing of princesses, Liselotte of Orléans being an exception) became less learned across the seventeenth century. One need only compare James I and James II, Rudolph II and Leopold, Henry III and Louis XIV, allowing nonetheless for remarkable differentiation in tutoring royals. The selection of head tutors, assistant tutors for specialized subjects such as math, geography, military science and music, somewhat challenged the older emphasis on ancient and modern languages, theology and ethics, with math and history often being taught by a theologian! (26) This development reveals the rise of knowledge as coherently defined disciplines, and the increasing recognition of expertise in technologies. This is not to say that, with the advent of Bacon's utopian New Atlantis and its latent negativism about the learning of the Ancients, "applied research" from antique sources would collapse.(27) After all, one of the tasks of the great Saumaise, in Leiden, was research into ancient Roman military institutions and strategy -- research at the command of the prince of Orange.(28) Botero and Lipsius had opened this type of research to such issues as the relation between the size of a population and military might, geography and strategy, indeed prefiguring what would be Edward Gibbons's first idea for research into ancient Roman culture. The philological and historical research of the Jesuits, Jean Bautista Villapaudo and Jeronimo Prado on Solomon's temple, sponsored by Philip II, accorded with the efforts to preserve and understand all aspects of ancient culture and, curiously, shape the design of the Escorial.(29) And was not Peiresc patriotic when he delighted in finding that a word had Roman, not Germanic origins?30 The learned all over Europe paid their respects to an ideal of Christendom, while their letters generally express satisfaction if not delight when news of military victory reached them. But, in general, fewer letters about policy matters ("open" ones especially) were written by men of learning to heads of state after about 1650. Here the terrible clouds left by the French invasion of the Rhineland, and the burning of Heidelberg would shock and lead to reflection on the history of barbarism, or in the case of Leibniz, the suggestion that Egypt would be a worthy conquest for the 'new' Alexander.

In the sixteenth century the revival and elaboration of antique notions of friendship nourished the sense of political intimacy that the learned sought with the great.(31) [They sought more than that: they wanted to teach and to war the princes against tyranny, war, injustice, etc.] The rise of disciplines and expertises undermined this political theory of symbiotic friendly relations -- leaving competency and scholarly public recognition as the criteria for appointment. Kings, princes, and the great adapted slowly to this change. Louis XIV took expertise into consideration, but not unlike Mazarin's decision to appoint Péréfixe as tutor for him, fidelity and personal familiarity, rather than expertise, still accounted for many appointments of the learned. The Colberts who were appointed to be royal librarians were certainly not qualified for the post.

The learned struggled with the constraints of expertise and disciplines as well. It was typical for them also to promote relatives and friends for library positions and for tutorships, but what if the individual lacked expertise and recognition in a discipline? Jean Chapelain's famous list of recommendations to Colbert marked a turning point toward expertise as the criterion for appointment by the French crown [underlined by GD without comment]; but perhaps to his surprise, Perrot d'Ablancourt was rejected for a post as historiographer royal, not because he lacked qualifications, but because he was a Huguenot.(32) [again, underlined by GD without comment] If the idea of the state nourished nascent patriotic rivalries on a European scale, ministers such as Colbert sought out highly reputed scholars of foreign birth.(33) Following the categorical dependence, if not quite servitude, that the sixteenth century popes required of the learned and the creative, the seventeenth-century possibilities of serving more than one master remained exceptional. Even in English and Dutch universities, you either belonged -- totally intellectually-religiously -- or else the welcome became short-lived. In any event, the negative ethical implications diminished for state service; religious conflict first undermined legitimate authority and then weakened the issue of legitimacy of power as such. The Tacitist moment nourished a theory that might makes right, and divine sanction of success sustained the same conclusion -- witness Richelieu's and Corneille's similar views on the matter.(34)

A final structural relation needs to be noted. The learned and the powerful generally shared the Humanist ethic of exemplarity -- the good and noble must be celebrated in verse, in prose, in the visual arts. [This sentence was bracketed in the margin by GD, without a comment.] Portrait collections and eulogies of the learned were sources of pride and satisfaction. The lives of the learned written by their disciples were structurally similar to the panegyrics addressed to princes and princesses and prelates -- only the virtues being celebrated differed.(35) They are more frequently called "savants" than "Humanists."

Like all their contemporaries, except the most radical of religious reformers, the learned either ordered or accepted having their offices and marks of service engraved on the rondels of their portraits. Name and office thus became one. Magliebechi took pride in his post as librarian to the Grand Duke of Tuscany, in the same manner that Galileo's portrait announces his link to one of the Duke's predecessors. As Francis Bacon put it: "in this theater of man's life it is reserved only for God and Angels to be lookers on."(36) The Diogenes strolling through the great square of Amsterdam must be understood as a rare philosophical stance with very rare real-life examples: these rare Diogenes had Jeremiads to spout, not Bayle-like footnotes, nor Que sais-je.(37)
If Erasmus, More and Budé suddenly awakened in 1700, what in Europe would have surprised them? The scale and power of states certainly, [underlined by GD without comment] with war being an even greater presence than in 1500, and with tragic consequences; the Royal Society and various academies, the increased presence of the book and reading; Socinian tendencies, more worrisome than Spinozan pan-Naturalism; and devastating historicizing critiques of holy artifacts and articles of the faith. They would have had little difficulty in grasping princely personalities or courtly cultures. Would an Ancient dictum about the nature of the human and his relations with Leviathan come to mind?


A Brief Bibliography

L'Âge d'or du mécénat (1598-1661). Actes du colloque international CNRS (mars 1983), Le Mécénat en France avant Colbert (Paris: CNRS, 1985).
Bots, Hans, and Waquet, Françoise, La République des Lettres (Paris: Belin, 1997).
Brockliss, Lawrence W. B., French Higher Education in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries: a Cultural History (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1987).
Chapelain, Jean, Lettres de Jean Chapelain ..., Philippe Tamizey de Larroque, ed. (Paris: Imprimerie nationale, 1880-1883), 2 vols.
Châtelain, Jean-Marc, "Heros togatus: culture cicéronienne et gloire de la robe dans la France d'Henri IV," Journal des Savants (1991), pp. 263-287.
Church, William F., Richelieu and Reason of State (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1972).
Delatour, Jérôme, "Pierre Dupuy pamphlétaire," --------------
Elliott, J. H., Richelieu and Olivares (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1984).
Evans, Robert J. W., "Learned Societies in Germany in the Seventeenth Century," European Studies Review, 7 (1977), pp. 129-151.
---- Rudolf II and his World, a Study in Intellectual History, 1576-1612 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1984; first ed., 1973).
Fattori, Marta, "La Stratégie épistolaire de la Respublica literaria," in La Biografia intellettuale di René Descartes attraverso la Corrospondance (Naples: Vivarium, 1999), pp. 49-79.
Fumaroli, Marc, "La République des Lettres," Diogène, 143 (1988), pp. 131-150.
---- "La République des Lettres, I," Annuaire du Collège de France, 1987-1988 (Paris: Collège de France,1989).
Germain, Michel (Dom), Lettres d'Italie, Jean Paul McDonald, ed. (Florence: Olschki, 1992).
Goldgar, Anne, Impolite Learning. Conduct and Community in the Republic of Letters, 1680-1775 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1995).
Grafton, Anthony, Joseph Scaliger. A Study in the History of Classical Scholarship. I. Textual Criticism and Exegisis. II. Historical Chronology (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1983-1993).
Harris Harbison, Elmore, The Christian Scholar in the Age of the Reformation. (New York: Scribner, 1956).
Le Clerc, Jean, Epistolario, Maria Grazia and Mario Sina, eds (Florence: Olschki, 1987-1997), 4 vols.
Le Gall, Jean-Marie, "Lectures méditerranéennes d'Érasme au XVIe siècle," Revue Historique, 302/2 (2000), pp. 435-443.
Le Goff, Jacques, Les Intellectuels au Moyen Âge (Paris: Seuil, 1957).
Malettke, Klaus, "Die Perzeption des Deutschen Reiches bei Théodore Godefroy," in Rainer Babel, ed., Frankreich im Europäischen Staatensystem der Frühen Neuzeit (Sigmaringen: Thorbecke Verlag, 1995), pp. 153-178.
Martin, Henri-Jean, Livre, pouvoirs et société à Paris au XVIIe siècle (1598-1701) (Genève: Droz, 1969), 2 vols.
---- La Naissance du livre moderne (Paris: Éditions du Cercle de la librairie, 2000).
Morford, Mark, Stoics and Neostoics. Rubens and the Circle of Lipsius (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991).
Najemy, John M., "Machiavelli and Geta: Men of Letters," in A. R. Ascoli and V. Kahn, eds, Machiavelli and the Discourse of Literature (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1993).
Nelles, Paul, "Historia magistra antiquitatis: Cicero and Jesuit History Teaching," Renaissance Studies, 13 (1999), pp. 130-172.
Neveu, Bruno, Érudition et religion au XVIIe et au XVIIIe siècle (Paris: Albin Michel, 1994).
Oestreich, Gerhard, Neostoicism and the Early Modern State (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1982).
Patronage and Institutions. Science, Technology and Medicine at the European Court, 1500-1750, Bruce T. Moran, ed. (Rochester: Boydell Press, 1991).
Peiresc, Nicolas-Claude Fabri de, Lettres à Naudé (1629-1637), Philippe Wolfe, ed. (Paris, Seattle, Tübingen: Papers on French Seventeenth Century Literature, 1983).
---- Lettres à Claude Saumaise et à son entourage (1629-1637), Agnès Bresson, ed. (Florence: Olschki, 1992).
Pomian, Krzysztof, Collectionneurs, amateurs et curieux: Paris-Venise XVIe-XVIIIe siècle (Paris: Gallimard, 1987).
---- "Utopia i Poznanie Historyczne: ideal République des Lettres i narodziny postulatu obiektywnosci historyka," Studia Filozoficzne, 40 (1965), pp. 21-76 (with a summary in English).
Schalk, Fritz, "Erasmus und die Respublica literaria," Actes du congrès Érasme ... Rotterdam, 27-29 octobre 1969 (Amsterdam, London: North Holland Publishing Company, 1971), pp. 14-28.
Stroup, Alice, A Company of Scientists. Botany, Patronage and Community at the Seventeenth-Century Parisian Royal Academy of Sciences (Berkeley, Los Angeles, Oxford: University of California Press, 1990).
Tuck, Richard, Philosophy and Government, 1572-1651 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993).
Ultee, Maarten, "The Republic of Letters: Learned Correspondence, 1680-1720," The Seventeenth Century, 2 (1987), pp. 95-112.


 1. Some classical works deserve mention here: P. O. Kristeller, Renaissance Thought; the Classic, Scholastic, and Humanist Strains (New York: Harper and Row, 1961); G. Mattingly, "Changing attitudes toward the state during the Renaissance" in W. H. Werkmeister, ed, Facets of the Renaissance (Los Angeles: University of Southern California Press, 1959); J. H. Hexter, More's Utopia: the Biography of an Idea (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1952); N. Eurich, Science in Utopia (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1967); and H. Bots and F. Waquet, La République des Lettres (Belin: de Boeck, 1997).
2. C. R. Sherman, Imagining Aristotle: Verbal and Visual Representation in Fourteenth-century France (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1995), passim; and S. M. Babbit, "Oresme's Livre de Politiques and the France of Charles V," Transactions of the American Philosophical Society, 75 (1985), passim.
3. H. Baron, The Crisis of the Early Italian Renaissance (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1966).
4. Research on the evolution of comparative government has not attracted systematic attention by historians since the older literature on the "new monarchies." See my essay, "Monarchy in Action," available on this website.
5. There were, of course, exceptions, an important one being Erasmus, who for most of his life remained engaged in the political dialogue between the Dutch cities and the provincial estates. See J. Tracy, Erasmus of the Low Countries (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1996), pp. 96f.
6. Men and Ideas, trans. J. S. Holmes and H. van Marle (New York: Meridien, 1959), pp 77-96.
7. Tracy, passim.
8. I cite Gadoffre: G. Gadoffre, La Revolution culturelle dans la France des Humanistes (Paris, 1997).
9.  Hexter, p. 133.
10. C. Nauert, "Erasmus's Spiritual Homeland: the Evidence of his 1527 Will," in R. B. Barnes, et al., Books Have Their Own Destiny, Sixteenth Century Essays and Studies, no. L (Kirksville: Thomas Jefferson University, 1998), pp. 103-110.
11. Budé is opposed to wars of conquest, yet he heroicizes Alexander the Great and Caesar. [And Francis I is Cesar, cf Louise de Savoie] His remark about the absence of a head proportionate to the strength of the other members in both France and Germany permits him to infer that it would be a worthwhile effort to join the empire and the monarchy, as "they had been in the past," under a single powerful head. At no point in the Institution does he refer to royal rights over imperial territories, a move that the Godefroys, the Dupuys, and Mabillon would make as they became "feudistes" about French and other European laws and customs. Le Prince dans la France des XVIe et XVIIe siècles, ed. by C. Bontems, L.-P. Raybaud, and J.-P. Brancourt (Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1965), p. 116. Much has been written about Budé's relations with Erasmus. See D. O. McNeil, Guillaume Budé and Humanist in the Reign of Francis I (Geneva: Droz, 1975), pp. 66-76
12. J. Delatour, "De l'art de plaider doctement; les notes de lecture de Pierre Dupuy, jeune avocat (1605-1606)," Bibliothèque de l'École des Chartes, 153 (1999), pp. 391-412.
13. M. Fumaroli, L'Âge d'Éloquence; Rhétorique et "res literaria" de la Renaissance au seuil de l'époque classique (Geneva: Droz, 1980), passim.
14. Fumaroli, pp. 153-161.
15. J. G. A. Pocock, The Machiavellian Moment (Princeton, Princeton University Press, 1975), pp. 297-299, and passim.
16. R. Tuck, Philosophy and Government, 1572-1651 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993), pp. 56ff.
17. Tuck, pp. 45-63.
18. Tuck, p. 60.
19. M. Morford, Stoics and Neostoics; Rubens and his Circle (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991), pp. 29-32.
20. Tuck, p. 61.
21. P. Zagorin, Ways of Lying; Dissimulation, Persecution and Conformity in Early Modern Europe (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990), passim. Bodin treats the matter in his Methodus...; for Montaigne et Lipsius, Tuck, pp. 56-57; for Bacon, see in addition to the above, Zagorin's Francis Bacon (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1998), p. 143.
22. J. Franklin, Jean Bodin and the Rise of Absolute Theory (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1969), passim; K. Pennington, The Prince and the Law, 1200-1600 (Berkeley, University of California Press, 1993), pp. 269-290.
23. Brilliant new syntheses notwithstanding, see H. Outram Evennet, The Spirit of the Counter-Reformation (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1968), passim; and A. Soman, "Press, Pulpit, and Censorship in France before Richelieu," Proceedings, American Philosophical Society, 120 (1976), passim.
24. A. Pagden, Lords of All the World: Ideologies of Empire in Spain, Britain and France, c. 1500-c 1800 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1995); and Engelbert of Admont, Aeneas Silvius Piccolomini, Juan de Torcquemada, Three Tracts on Empire, trans. and ed. by T. M. Izbicki and C. J. Nederman (Bristol: Thoemmes, 2000).
25. S. Gaukroger, Descartes (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995), p. 290; see also G. Rodis-Lewis, Descartes (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1995), p. 71. On the vitality of Aristotelian thought and its continuing importance to Descartes, D. Des Chene, Physiologia; Natural Philosophy in Late Aristotelian Thought (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1996) passim.
26. No general study of the education of princes and princesses across the two centuries exists; Jean Meyer is currently at work on one. For a survey of what could be generated around a princely education, see the dated by indispensable G. Lacour-Gayet, L'Éducation politique de Louis XIV (Paris: Hachette, 1923), passim.
27. On Bacon, see P. Zagorin, Francis Bacon (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1998), p. 87.
28. C. N. F. de Peiresc, Lettres à Claude Saumaise et à son entourage (1620-37), ed. by A. Bresson (Florence: Olschki, 1992), passim, but especially pp. 388-392.
29. Wolfgang Hermann, "Unknown Designs for the Temple of Jerusalem by Claude Perrault," in R. Wittkower and I. Jaffe, eds, Baroque Art: The Jesuit Contribution (New York: Fordham University Press, 1972), pp. 143-158; and René Taylor,"Hermetism and Mystical Architecture in the Society of Jesus," in R. Wittkower and I. Jaffe, eds, Baroque Art: The Jesuit Contribution (New York: Fordham University Press, 1972), pp. 63-97.
30. The jurist that he was, Peiresc researched (and asked for Saumaise's help) on the thorny issue of on what grounds someone could be prosecuted for military cowardice. Peiresc, Aix, 22 April 1636, p. 259.
31. F. Conrad, "A Preservation against Tyranny: the Political Ideology of Sir Thomas Elyot," (Ph. D. dissertation, The Johns Hopkins University, 1988) on reading ancient sources about friendship and politics by a sixteenth-century, somewhat learned gentleman; and Morford, passim.
32. See my Artisans of Glory; Writers and Historical Thought in Seventeenth-century France (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1980), p. 192.
33. Specialized studies have correct and expanded upon P. Clément's general synthesis of the relations between the state and learned culture in general, but it still offers a point of departure: Histoire de Colbert (Paris: Perrin, 1892) II, chaps. 26-27.
34. See my "Clemency in Corneille and Richelieu," Cahiers de l'Histoire, Université de Montréal, 16 (1996), pp. 80-100. [We should talk about Corneille and Richelieu!]
35.The promotional aspects of the learned in symbiotic relation with the powerful, reached an apogee in the personal reign of Louis XIV, as ancient Roman exemplarity and biography came to be understood and surpassed; see my Artisans of Glory..., passim. A model study of learned self-promotion is L. Jardine's Erasmus, Man of Letters (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1993), and an interesting example of the support by a publisher is elucidated by C. Jouhaud, Les Pouvoirs de la Littérature (Paris: Gallimard, 2000), chap. I.
36. David M. Posner, The Performance of Nobility in Early Modern European Literature (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), pp. 80-121.
37. Tommaso Campanella's inability to conform to the socially-imagined image of the scholar-man of letters is brilliantly elucidated by J. Headley, Tommaso Campanella and the Transformation of the World (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1997). See also Anne Goldgar's Impolite Learning: Conduct and Community in the Republic of Letters (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1995). Mention must also be made of both Hobbes's and Locke's intimate political engagement in aristocratic parties. On the former, see the brief, brilliant "Thomas Hobbes and the studia humanitatis," in Writing and Political Engagement in Seventeenth-century England, D. Hirst and R. Strier, eds, (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), pp. 69-88.