Peter Forsskal: Thoughts on Civil Liberty
  Vitae ratio, 1756
  Peter Forsskål rehearses his educational history and requests exemption from the normal examination process.
  Transcription and English translation by David Shaw
Vitae Ratio 1
Vitae Ratio 2
  Transcription (Latin):
Spectabilis Decane,
Viri summe reverendi, excellentissimi, amplissimi
Gratissimam mihi bonarum literarum sedem Göttingam, Vestrasque, Viri celeberrimi, scholas, in quibus duo annos et dimidium consumsi, brevi relicturus, ne quid musis Vestris non debeam, quod debere potuissem, honores Philosophicos, si me non indignum illis judicaveritis, qua par est submissione expeto. Vitæ igitur rationem, quoniam vel haec tenuia Vos non adspernari edoctus sum, paucis exponam. Natus sum Helsingforsiæ 1732. 11. Jan. patre Johanne Forsskål D. qui Holmiæ nunc Consistorii Adsessoris et Pastoris ad Ecclesiam Mariæ Magdalenæ officio fungit[ur]. Parentis in domo primum ipsius institutione, post[ea] doctore usus Jacobo Haartman avunculo matern[o] [Abo]ensis Academiæ nunc Vice-Bibliothecario, primas [...] didici; hujusque auspiciis civis Academiæ Upsaliensis, et [q...] nationis Üplandicæ, 1742 cooptatus sum. Undecimo [p...] anno 1753. Guthermuthiano ornatum stipendio, [...]bus testamenti ad exteras musas abire jussum, Vestra [A]cademiæ fama Göttingam arcessevit, Celeberrimoque Web[er] eo tempore Prorectori, nomen dedi. Hic quamdiu com[mo]ratus sum, Philosophiæ liberioris et Philologiæ ori[entalis] studium, quod et Upsaliæ feceram, cum Theologico con[j...] ideoque ex Vestro amplissimo ordine Celeb. S. C. Hollma[nn] et Celeb. J. D. Michaelem potissimos doctores ha[bui.] Quid in his rebus profecerim, certe proficere volueri[m] [be]nigno Vestro examini jam committo, illique negotio [vt] constituere placeat, atque, si hoc ferre tenues vires posse [...]eritis, ut speciminis alicujus literarii sine præside dep[...n]di potestatem faciatis, submisse rogo. Ero dum vixero
Celeberrimorum Nominum Vestrorum
cultor observantissimu[s]
Petrus Forsskål Sue[cus]
Göttingæ. 9. Maji.
Honorable Dean,
Most reverend, excellent and distinguished gentlemen,

On the point of departing from Göttingen, a seat of learning which has been most pleasing to me, and from the classes of you famous men, where I have spent two and a half years, lest I should fail to acknowledge what I should to your teaching, I desire to be awarded a degree in Philosophy by the appropriate method of submission, if you would judge me not unworthy of this. I shall therefore set out some elements of my curriculum vitae, since I am instructed that you will not despise even these trifles.

I was born in Helsinki on 11 January 1732. My father is Dr Johan Forsskål who now occupies the office of Consistory Assessor at Stockholm and Pastor of the church of Mary Magdalen. I was first of all educated at home by my father; afterwards I learned my basics with my maternal uncle Dr Jacob Hartmann who is now the Sub-Librarian of Åbo Academy. Under his guidance I enrolled at Uppsala University and joined the Uplands nation in 1742.

In 1753, my eleventh year there, I was awarded the Guthermuth travel bursary, set up in his will to support those seeking to study abroad. The fame of your university attracted me to Göttingen and I submitted my name to the most famous professor Weber, at that time the Pro-Rector. While I have been here, I have studied modern philosophy and oriental languages, which I also did at Uppsala, and also theology, under the principal teachers in your distinguished faculty S. C. Hollmann and J. D. Michaelis.

I now submit what I have achieved in these subjects, indeed what I would like to have achieved, for your kind examination by such a process as it may please you to establish; and I humbly ask that, if you should be able to accept this product of my modest abilities, you should create a power to approve it without a supervisor as a piece of literature.

So long as I shall live,
I shall be the most devoted follower
of your most celebrated names,
Peter Forsskål from Sweden.
Göttingen, 9 May, 1756.