Christina of SwedenChristina of Sweden

Swedish Disciple of Descartes


Perhaps best known as the indirect cause of death of Rene Descartes, Princess Christina of Sweden was a student of the master philosopher. Descartes died from a cold caught after grueling, infamous 5 a.m. philosophy sessions with Cartesian Christina, in the cold of her Swedish castle.

She is well-known as the provacateur of Descartes' "Letter on Love." This was the beginning of a number of letters that passed between the two, which influenced Christina to eventually call Descartes to her home in Sweden in order for him to better tutor her in the Cartesian methods of philosophy. Descartes succumbed to Stockholm's cold in a mere five months.

A well educated and intelligent monarch, she converted to Catholicism soon after Descares' death, and after abdicating the throne in 1654 she moved to Rome where she died alone, unknown and penniless.

Some of her works include:

  • Maxims of a Queen(compiled 1907)
  • Lettters de Descartes(compiled 1663)

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