PHYSICISTS and MATHEMATICIANS of the ANCIENT WORLD
Images and descriptions (with revision here) reprinted from: Perimeter Institute
Anaximander / Ἀναξίμανδρος(c. 610-546 BCE) is widely regarded as the world’s first physicist – the first to record his belief that nature followed fixed laws. He conducted the earliest recorded experiment, and introduced the sundial and other instruments.
Pythagoras of Samos / Πυθαγόρας ὁ Σάμιος (c. 570-495 BCE) discovered the Pythagorean Theorem: that a square laid along the long side of a triangle covers the same area as the two squares laid along the two shorter sides.
Euclid / Εὐκλείδης (c. 325-265 BCE) built up a complete description of space from a handful of axioms, such as “two parallel lines never cross.” He’s remembered as the “father of geometry,” and the particular kind of space he described, where parallel lines never cross, is now called “Euclidian space.”
Archimedes / Ἀρχιμήδης (c. 287-212 BCE) was an early scientist and engineer, maybe one of the most brilliant mathematicians of all time. He designed a number of innovative machines and discovered the principle of displacement: that the weight of an object floating in water is equal to the weight of the water it shoves aside.
Hypatia / Ὑπατία (c. 360-415 CE) was the headmaster of the Platonist school at Alexandria, where she taught mathematics and astronomy. She invented the astrolabe and perhaps the hydrometer, and wrote several major books on geometry.
Āryabhaṭa / आर्यभट (476-550) was a pioneer of mathematics and astronomy in India. He is believed to have devised the concept of zero and worked on the approximation of pi.
Abū ʿAlī al-Ḥasan ibn al-Ḥasan ibn al-Haytham / أبو علي، الحسن بن الحسن بن الهيثم [Latinized as Alhazen or Alhacen] (965-1040) was a mathematician, astronomer, and philosopher, sometimes known in Europe as simply “the physicist.” He invented the camera obscura and is the father of modern optics.
Wikipedia adds: “He has been described as the father of modern optics, experimental physics and scientific methodology and could also claim to be the first theoretical physicist.”
THE SCIENTIFIC TYPOGRAPHIES OF Dr. Prateek Lala: artistic representations of more than 50 influential physicists, cosmologists, and mathematicians – from Anaximander up to Stephen Hawking.
Images and descriptions reprinted from: Perimeter Institute
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