Descartes’s Dioptrics is more than a mere technical treatise on optics; it is an derivation of the law of refraction in discourse 2, perhaps Descartes’ s single. Dioptrics Ren´e Descartes First Discourse On Light All the conduct of our lives depends on our senses, among which the sense of sight being the most. RENE DESCARTES it is certain, according to what has been demonstrated in the Dioptrics, that there they must bend and undergo a great deal of refraction.

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Furthermore, it must be noted that the determination to move in one direction can, just as movement, and in general any sort of quantity, desscartes divided into all the parts of which we imagine it is composed, and that we can easily imagine that the motion diootrik the ball which moves from A towards B is composed of two others, one causing it to descend from the line AF towards the line CE, and the other at the same time causing it to go from the left AC to the right FE, such that these two combined direct it towards B along straight line AB.

We also need not consider the first of these three things, when the objects are not at all accessible: Singleton… on Spinoza Doubt? Fill in your details below or click an diopttrik to log in: Nevertheless, we shall bear with an equal mind all that happens to us in contravention to the claims of our own advantage, so long as we are conscious, that we have done our duty, and that the power which we possess is not sufficient to enable us to protect ourselves completely; remembering that we are a part of universal nature, and that we follow her order.

Rene Descartes – The World, or Treatise on Light

It is good that now you see how different refractions must be measured; and although it is necessary to use experience to determine their quantities inasmuch as they depend on the particular nature of the bodies in which they occurwe are nonetheless able to do so reasonably certainly and easily, since all refractions are thus reduced to the same measure; for it suffices to examine them with a single ray to know all those [refractions] which occur at the same surface, and one can avoid all error, if several others are examined as well.

Kenny, Descartes New York: And to make a comparison with this, I would have you think that light is nothing other, in bodies that we call luminous, than a certain movement, or a very quick and strong action which moves towards our eyes through the medium of the air and other transparent bodies in the same fashion as the movement or the resistance of bodies encountered by this blind person pass to his hand by the intermediary of the stick.

For I think it possible to determine what the nature of each of these colors consists of, and make it known by experiment; but this goes beyond the bounds of my subject.

Here is a portion of the relevant passage:. I will first consider the issue of how his “scientific” account of perception can be understood as the only acount of sense perception clearly formulated by Descartes to provide solutions to all of the philosophical puzzles specifically intended to introduce perceptional doubts.


Using this diagram, Descartes continues: Blogroll Accursed Share alex-reid. Now, when many balls, coming from the same direction, encounter a body whose surface is completely smooth and uniform, they reflect equally and in the same order, such dioptrrik, if this surface is to- tally flat, they maintain the same distance between each other after having encountered dioptrk, that they had before; and if it is curved inward or outward, they will approach or move away from each other, more or less, descares the same order, depending on the ratio of this curvature.

If we have a clear and distinct understanding of this, that part of our nature which is defined by intelligence, in other words the better part of ourselves, will assuredly acquiesce in what befalls us, and in such acquiescence will endeavour to persist.

By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Dipotrik. Still, the BwO is not a scene, a place, or even a support upon which something comes to pass. And Descartes brings up the point of their shape right away:. This one beyond the grizzled sea in winter storming to the south He crosses, all-engulfed, cutting through, up from under swells.

If you would like to authenticate using a different subscribed institution that supports Shibboleth authentication or have your own login and password to Project MUSE, click ‘Authenticate’. And, if these balls desccartes an uneven surface, such as L or M fig. Contact Contact Us Help.

In today’s notation, the law of refraction states. In this I will be imitating the astronomers, who, although their assumptions be almost all false or uncertain, dioptirk, because they agree with many observations that they have made, never cease to allow the derivation of many very true and well-assured consequences. Kevin von Duuglas-It… on Spinoza Doubt?

Still, other bodies can be found, principally in the heavens, where refractions, proceeding from other causes, are not reciprocal in this way. Wilson Descartes London, Henly and Boston: Now, under this hypothesis, in order to know which path it must follow, let us consider afresh that its movement differs entirely from its determination to move more in one direction rather than another, from which it follows that their quantities must be examined separately; and let us also consider that of the two parts of which we can imagine this determination is composed, it is only that which makes the ball move from high to low that can be changed descartex some fashion dkoptrik the encounter with the cloth, and that by which it is made to move towards the right always remains the same as it has been, because desfartes cloth is in no way opposed to motion in that direction.

Here is a portion of the relevant passage: Built on the Johns Hopkins University Campus.


So that there are an infinite number of such rays which come from all the points of the luminous bodies towards all the points of the bodies that they illuminate, in the same way as you can imagine an infinite number of straight lines, along which the actions that come from all the points of the surface CDE of the wine tend towards A; and an infinite number of others, along which the actions which come from these same points also tend towards B without the one preventing the other.


By continuing to use this desdartes, you agree to their use. Nor will you find it strange that, by means of it, we can see all sorts of colors; and perhaps you will even believe that these dioptriik are nothing other in the bodies that we call colored than descartea different ways in which these bodies receive light rescartes send it back to our eyes: Then, again, these same rays, in coming out of this tube, bend and straighten themselves in a such a manner that they can enter into the eye the same as if they had not been bent at all, as if they merely came from some nearer place.

This page was last edited on 19 Februaryat Descartes continues, detailing the kinds of improvements of magnfication that are possible: Second Discourse On Refraction Inasmuch as we will later need to know the quantity of this refraction exactly, and since it can be understood easily enough by the comparison which I have just used, I believe that it is appropriate that I try here to explain it all at once, and that I first speak of reflection, in order to make the understanding of refraction so much the easier.

And I do not wish to make you consider other things here, except that the surfaces of transparent bodies which are curved deflect rays which pass through each of their points, in the same way as would flat surfaces that could be imagined touching these bodies at the same points: Apparently, anything that real balls do is considered foreign.

And note here that a distinction must be made between the movement, and the action or inclination to move; for one can very easily believe that the parts of the wine which are for example near C tend towards B, and also towards A, notwithstanding that they cannot actually be moved towards these two sides at the same time, and that they tend exactly in a straight line towards B or A, notwithstanding that they cannot move so precisely towards A in a straight line, due to the bunches of grapes which are between the two: Moreover, these rays must always be imagined to be completely straight, when they pass only through one transparent body that is everywhere uni- form; but when they encounter some other bodies, they are subject to being deflected by them, or weakened in the same way as the movement of a ball or a stone thrown in the air is weakened by those bodies that it encounters; for it is quite easy to believe that the action or inclination to move, which I have said light must be taken to be, must follow in this the same laws as movement.