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Constructions of a Dutch polymath
This book studies the Dutch mathematician Simon Stevin (1548-1620) as a new type of ‘man of knowing’. Traditionally, Stevin is best known for his contributions to the ‘Archimedean turn’. This innovative volume moves beyond this conventional image by bringing many other aspects of his work into view, by analysing the connections between the multiple strands of his thinking and by situating him in a broader European context. Like other multi-talents (‘polymaths’) in his time (several of whom are discussed in this volume), Stevin made an important contribution to the transformation of the ideal of knowledge in early modern Europe. This book thus provides new insights in the phenomenon of ‘polymaths’ in general and in the case of Stevin in particular.
Motifs of Modern Art and Science
Author: Lewis Pyenson
In The Shock of Recognition, Lewis Pyenson uses a method called Historical Complementarity to identify the motif of non-figurative abstraction in modern art and science. He identifies the motif in Picasso’s and Einstein’s educational environments. He shows how this motif in domestic furnishing and in urban lighting set the stage for Picasso’s and Einstein’s professional success before 1914. He applies his method to intellectual life in Argentina, using it to address that nation’s focus on an inventory of the natural world until the 1940s, its adoption of non-figurative art and nuclear physics in the middle of the twentieth century, and attention to landscape painting and the wonder of nature at the end of the century.
Proceedings of the Tenth Symposium Platonicum Pragense
Plato's 'Timaeus' brings together a number of studies from both leading Plato specialists and up-and-coming researchers from across Europe. The contributions cover a wide variety of topics, ranging from the literary form of the work to the ontology of sense perception and the status of medicine in Timaeus' account. Although informed by a commitment to methodological diversity, the collection as a whole forms an organic unity, opening fresh perspectives on widely read passages, while shedding new light on less frequently discussed topics. The volume thus provides a valuable resource for students and researchers at all levels, whether their interest bears on the Timaeus as a whole or on a particular passage.
Studies in the history of medieval astronomy in the Iberian Peninsula and the Maghrib
Author: Julio Samsó
In On Both Sides of the Strait of Gibraltar Julio Samsó studies the history of medieval astronomy in al-Andalus (Muslim Spain), the Maghrib and the Christian kingdoms of the Iberian Peninsula. He proves that the Arabic, Latin, Hebrew, Castilian and Catalan sources belong to the same tradition whose origin can be dated in the 11th century due to the changes in Ptolemy’s astronomical theory introduced by the Toledan astronomer Ibn al-Zarqālluh/Azarquiel.
The book also analyses the role of al-Andalus and the Iberian Peninsula in the transmission of Islamic astronomy to Europe and justifies the fact that Eastern Islamic works published after ca. 950 CE were not accessible to medieval European scholars because they had not reached al-Andalus.
The 17th-century Brahmatulyasāraṇī is a rich repository of information about Indian mathematical astronomy and its genres of scientific writing in Sanskrit. This painstaking critical edition, translation, and technical analysis of the work includes detailed technical background about its content and relation to the seminal 12th-century astronomical handbook Karaṇakutūhala. This book explores important contextual information about the role and study of numerical tables in pre-modern astronomy, as well as the many challenges arising from critically editing numerical data in the Indian astral sciences.
Why does a magnet attract iron? Why does a compass needle point north? Although the magnet or lodestone was known since antiquity, magnetism only became an important topic in natural science and technology in the early modern period. In Magnes Christoph Sander explores this fascinating subject and draws, for the first time, a comprehensive picture of early modern research on magnetism (c. 1500–1650). Covering all disciplines of this period, Magnes examines what scholars understood by ‘magnet’ and ‘magnetism,’ which properties they ascribed to it, in which instruments and practices magnetism was employed, and how they tried to explain this exciting phenomenon. This historical panorama is based on circa 1500 historical sources, including over 100 manuscripts.
An Edition of the Reconstructed Text of the Placita with a Commentary and a Collection of Related Texts
Editors: Jaap Mansfeld and David Runia
A new reconstruction and text of the Placita of Aëtius (ca. 50 CE), accompanied by a full commentary and an extensive collection of related texts. This compendium, arguably the most important doxographical text to survive from antiquity, is known through the intensive use made of it by authors in later antiquity and beyond. Covering the entire field of natural philosophy, it has long been mined as a source of information about ancient philosophers and their views. It now receives a thorough analysis as a remarkable work in its own right. This volume is the culmination of a five-volume set of studies on Aëtius (1996–2020): Aëtiana I (ISBN: 9789004105805, 1996), II (Parts 1&2; set ISBN 9789004172067; 2008), III (ISBN 9789004180413; 2009), IV (ISBN: 9789004361454, 2018), and V (Parts 1-4). It uses an innovative methodology to replace the seminal edition of Hermann Diels (1879).
A History of Cerebral Anthropology
Since the second half of the eighteenth century, generations of scientists persisted in studying the relationships between the volume, weight or shape of the human brain and the degree of ‘intelligence’. In Pogliano’s book, the thread of time drives the narrative up to the mid-twentieth century. It investigates the duration and changes of a game that was intrinsically political, although having to do with bones and nervous matter. Races made its main object, during a long period when Western culture believed the human species to be naturally partitioned into a number of discrete types, with their innate and hereditary traits. Never leading to irrefutable achievements, the polycentric (as well as visual) enterprise herein described is full of growing tensions, doubts, and disillusionment.
A Parallel Latin-English Critical Edition of Liber Electionum, Liber Interrogationum, and Tractatus Particulares. Abraham Ibn Ezra’s Astrological Writings, Volume 7
Editor: Shlomo Sela
As a result of Abraham Ibn Ezra’s increasing popularity after his death, there were repeated waves of translation of collections of his Hebrew astrological treatises into Latin and into the emerging European vernaculars. A study of these versions affords us a golden opportunity to shed light on a significant missing link in our knowledge of Ibn Ezra’s astrological oeuvre. The present volume offers the first critical edition, accompanied by an English translation, a commentary, and an introductory study, of three Latin texts on the astrological doctrines of elections and interrogations, written by or attributed to Abraham Ibn Ezra: the Liber electionum, the Liber interrogationum, and the Tractatus particulares.