Archimedes: Reception in the Renaissance

Publikation: Bidrag til bog/antologi/rapportBidrag til bog/antologiForskningpeer review


With only Apuleius and Augustine as partial
exceptions, Latin Antiquity did not know
Archimedes as a mathematician but only as
an ingenious engineer and astronomer, serving
his city and killed by fatal distraction when in
the end it was taken by ruse. The Latin Middle
Ages forgot even much of that, and when
Archimedean mathematics was translated in
the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, almost no
integration with the traditional image of the
person took place.
With the exception of Petrarca, who knew
the civically useful engineer and the astrologer,
fourteenth-century Humanists show no interest
in Archimedes. In the fifteenth century, “higher
artisans” with Humanist connections or education
took interest in Archimedes the technician
and started identifying with him. In midcentury,
a new translation of most works from
the Greek was made by Jacopo Cremonensis,
and Regiomontanus and a few other mathematicians
began resurrecting the image of the
geometer, yet without emulating him.
Giorgio Valla’s posthumous De expetendis
et fugiendis rebus from 1501 marks a
watershed. Valla drew knowledge of the person
as well as his works from Proclus and Pappus,
thus integrating the two. Over the century, a
number of editions also appeared, the Editio
princeps in 1544, and a mathematical work
following the footsteps of Archimedes was
made by Maurolico, Commandino, and others.
The Northern Renaissance only discovered
Archimedes in the 1530s and for long only
superficially. The first to express a (purely
ideological) high appreciation is Ramus in
1569, and the first to make creative use of his
mathematics was Viète in the 1590s.
TitelEncyclopedia of Renaissance Philosophy
RedaktørerMarco Sgarbi
Antal sider7
ISBN (Elektronisk)978-3-319-02848-4
StatusUdgivet - 2019

Citer dette