Martin Schoock

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Martin Schoock (1 April 1614–1669) was a Dutch academic and polymath.


Martin Schoock, engraving by Steven van Lamsweerde. Martinus Schoock 1614-1669.jpg
Martin Schoock, engraving by Steven van Lamsweerde.


He was born in Utrecht. His grandfather Anton van Voorst taught him Latin. His parents were Remonstrants and intended him for the law; he studied theology and philosophy from 1632 in Leiden under Antonius Walaeus. As a student of Gisbertus Voetius he acquired a doctorate in philosophy around 1636.

Utrecht City and municipality in the province of Utrecht, Netherlands

Utrecht is the fourth-largest city and a municipality of the Netherlands, capital and most populous city of the province of Utrecht. It is located in the eastern corner of the Randstad conurbation, and in the very centre of mainland Netherlands, and had a population of 345,080 in 2017.


The Remonstrants are a historic community of mostly Dutch Protestants who originally supported Jacobus Arminius, and after his death, continue to maintain his original views. In 1610, they presented to the States of Holland and Friesland a remonstrance in five articles formulating their points of disagreement with Calvinism as adopted by the Dutch Reformed Church.

Leiden City and municipality in South Holland, Netherlands

Leiden is a city and municipality in the province of South Holland, Netherlands. The municipality of Leiden had a population of 123,856 in August 2017, but the city forms one densely connected agglomeration with its suburbs Oegstgeest, Leiderdorp, Voorschoten and Zoeterwoude with 206,647 inhabitants. The Netherlands Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) further includes Katwijk in the agglomeration which makes the total population of the Leiden urban agglomeration 270,879, and in the larger Leiden urban area also Teylingen, Noordwijk, and Noordwijkerhout are included with in total 348,868 inhabitants. Leiden is located on the Oude Rijn, at a distance of some 20 kilometres from The Hague to its south and some 40 km (25 mi) from Amsterdam to its north. The recreational area of the Kaag Lakes (Kagerplassen) lies just to the northeast of Leiden.

About 1638 he became professor in classical literature, rhetoric and history at the University of Deventer, and then in 1640 in the University of Groningen professor in logic and physics. Schoock was combative and brought difficulties on himself. Descartes at one point felt Schoock had libeled him and complained to the French ambassador. Schoock was arrested and spent two days in jail. He exonerated himself by in effect proving that Voetius had put him up to it, citing letters from his former professor.

University of Groningen university in the Netherlands

The University of Groningen is a public research university in the city of Groningen in the Netherlands. The university was founded in 1614. Since its founding more than 200,000 students have graduated.

After the death of his first wife, Angelica van Merck, with whom he had seven sons and a daughter, he came into money troubles. He made a second marriage with a rich widow.

At the end of his life Schoock left Groningen. He became official historian of the Elector of Brandenburg, and Professor at the University of Frankfurt-on-Oder, where he died.


Schoock published about 50 works. In the 1642–43 controversy between René Descartes and Voetius, Schoock attacked Descartes and his philosophy fiercely in his Admiranda methodus novae philosophiae Renati De Cartes; he stated later that Voetius had been a major author of the book.

René Descartes 17th-century French philosopher, mathematician, and scientist

René Descartes was a French philosopher, mathematician, and scientist. A native of the Kingdom of France, he spent about 20 years (1629–1649) of his life in the Dutch Republic after serving for a while in the Dutch States Army of Maurice of Nassau, Prince of Orange and the Stadtholder of the United Provinces. He is generally considered one of the most notable intellectual figures of the Dutch Golden Age.

He published in 1664 two works on dairy products: Tractus de Butyro (on butter), the first such publication; and Accessit ejusdem Diatriba de aversatione casei (on the dislike of cheese).

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Another of his books was The Chicken and the Egg.

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Further reading

The Mathematics Genealogy Project is a web-based database for the academic genealogy of mathematicians. By 13 February 2019, it contained information on 238,725 mathematical scientists who contributed to research-level mathematics. For a typical mathematician, the project entry includes graduation year, thesis title, alma mater, doctoral advisor, and doctoral students.