Archimedes of Syracuse. Mathematician of antiquity.

Archimedes, Syracuse, Greek clothing, mathematician, physicist, engineer, Antique

Archimedes of Syracuse 287-212 BC

Archimedes of Syracuse

Archimedes of Syracuse (Greek χρχιμήδης Archimēdēs) born around 287 BC probably in Syracuse; Died in 212 BC, was a Greek mathematician, physicist and engineer. He is considered one of the most important mathematicians of antiquity. His works were also important in the development of higher analysis in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.

Archimedes the greatest mathematician of his age, was a Sicilian and a native of Syracuse. His knowledge extended to what was, for those times, proficiency in geometry, hydrostatics, optics, mechanics and astronomy. Nor was he a mere theorist. He put his learning to many practical uses, especially during the siege of Syracuse, when be invented engines of war against the enemy, and is reported to have set the Roman fleet on fire by means of reflecting mirrors. He also devised laborsaving arrangements of ropes and pulleys, and was wonderfully skilled in solving problems. He discovered the doctrine of specific gravity; also said to Hiero, King of Syracuse, that, if given a point upon which to rest a lever, be could move the world.

The illustration shows Archimedes in his study, at the time of the capture of Syracuse. He was absorbed in the solution of a problem when a Roman soldier burst into the room and ordered the mathematician to follow him to the Roman general. Marcellus. Archimedes refused to go until he had concluded his demonstration. The soldier, in his anger, killed him.

Nic. Barabino, Artist. M. Weber, Engraver

Source: Character sketches of romance, fiction and the drama by Rev. Ebenezer Cobham Brewer, 1892. A revised American edition of the readers handbook. Edited by Marion Harland.

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