Noel Malcolm (ed.), The Clarendon Edition of the Works of Thomas Hobbes, Vol. 7: The Correspondence, Vol. 2: 1660–1679

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Translation of Letter 159


I have sent you, via your bookseller, Mr Crooke,1 an objection by M. de Sluse2 to which I shall await either your reply, or your generous applause. I have news from M. Blaeu: he will begin printing your works at the end of January.3 It is as much in his interest as in yours to hasten their publication. I hope you will live long enough, in good health, to see five or six editions. Please send me through a friend whatever additions or alterations you have to make; and never cease to love me. Please also ensure that the Earl of Devonshire honours me with some portion of his esteem, and assure him of my humble service. I shall testify to my respect for him if I should happen to write an account of my travels,4 as I am requested to do; meanwhile I speak frequently, and in high places, about his virtue, which does indeed correspond well to his protection of you, the most virtuous man I know. How I love him for his affection towards you, and what great qualities of soul that affection indicates to me!

pg 575The other day, when I was talking about him to M. Gaches,5 the minister at Charenton, I remembered the idea he had of sending his son to France for a change of air, with a tutor; and M. Gaches offered me one, and even offered his house in Paris as well, Messrs Killigrew6and Locket7 can tell the Earl what a worthy person M. Gaches is, and the hint I give you about this matter is sufficient, I am,

  • Sir,
  • Your most humble and most obedient servant,
  • Sorbière

Paris, 4 December 1663.

[addressed:] To Mr Hobbes, at the Earl of Devonshire's house, London

Notes Settings


Editor’s Note
1 Andrew Crooke (see the Biographical Register, 'William Crooke').
Editor’s Note
2 Letter 156, enclosure.
Editor’s Note
3 Johan Blaeu's edition of the Opera philosophica was not published until 1668. The decision to include a Latin translation of Leviathan (see Letter 166) was probably the main reason for the delay.
Editor’s Note
4 Sorbière's Relation d'un voyage was completed on [2/] 12 Dec. 1663 and printed in Paris by [6/] 16 May 1664 (sig. a4v and 'Privilège'): it contained fulsome praise of the Earl of Devonshire (pp. 158–60).
Editor’s Note
5 Raymond Gaches (c.1615–68), an eminent Huguenot minister, was pastor of Saint-Affrique (1640), Castres (1649), and Charenton (1654); he had scientific interests and wrote poetry (including a translation of the Iliad); his son jean-Jacques studied at Oxford in 1662 and became an Anglican priest. (See Nayral, Biographie castraise; Tournier, Les Refugiés du pays castrais, pp. 151–2; Niderst, Madeleine de Scudéry, pp. 14–16.) That some connection was indeed established with the Gaches family is indicated by a copy of Pomfret's Life of Christian Countess of Devonshire, inscribed to Jean-Jacques Gaches: 'J, J. Gaches, a gift from the Countess of Devonshire, 30 Nov. 1684, at Roehampton' ('J. J. Gaches Ex dono Comitessae de Devonshire anno 84 mense nov: die 30. att Rohampton' (Chatsworth, Devonshire collection, unclassified); I am very grateful to Mr Michael Pearman for drawing this to my attention).
Editor’s Note
6 Probably Dr Henry Killigrew (1613–1700), who had been chaplain to the Duke of York since 1642 and tutor to the third Earl of Devonshire's elder son, and was appointed Master of the Savoy in 1663. See also Letter 144 n. 1.
Editor’s Note
7 Unidentified; possibly Sir William Lockhart (1621–75), who had been Ambassador to France from 1656 to 1659.
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