Manuscript Collection MS COLL 00302 2B Annex - Helvétius Papers

Identity area

Reference code

CA OTUTF MS COLL 00302 2B Annex


Helvétius Papers


  • 1749-1801 (Creation)

Level of description

Manuscript Collection

Extent and medium

1 box (36 items)

Context area

Name of creator


Biographical history

Claude Adrien Helvetius, born 1715 in Paris, was a French philosopher. He studied at the College Louis-le Grand, and in 1738 received the lucrative post of farmer-general, which, however, he soon exchanged for the position of chamberlain to the queen. Tiring of the idle and dissipated life of the court, he married in 1751, and retired to a small estate at Vore, in Perche, where he devoted himself chiefly to philosophical studies. He was one of the "Encyclopaedists," and held the skeptical and materialistic views common to that school of philosophy.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Letters to the French philosopher from 18th century writers, philosophers, diplomats, ecclesiastics, government officials, patrons or friends of the arts.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


System of arrangement

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Material may be requested in person at the Fisher Library Reference Desk, or in advance using our online stack retrieval request form:

Conditions governing reproduction

Language of material

  • English
  • French

Script of material

Language and script notes

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

Uploaded finding aid

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Existence and location of copies

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Description identifier


Institution identifier

Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, University of Toronto

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