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Archimedes and Leonardo Da Vinci: The Greatest Geniuses of Antiquity and the Ren
Charles River Editors
*Profiles the inventions and works of both men.
*Includes a bibliography on each man for further reading.
“Give me a place to stand, and I shall move the world.’"– Archimedes
“Iron rusts from disuse; stagnant water loses its purity and in cold weather becomes frozen; even so does inaction sap the vigor of the mind.” – Leonardo
Over 1500 years before Leonardo Da Vinci became the Renaissance Man, antiquity had its own in the form of Archimedes, one of the most famous Ancient Greeks. An engineer, mathematician, physicist, scientist and astronomer all rolled into one, Archimedes has been credited for making groundbreaking discoveries, some of which are undoubtedly fact and others that are almost certainly myth. Regardless, he’s considered the first man to determine a way to measure an object’s mass, and also the first man to realize that refracting the Sun’s light could burn something, theorizing the existence of lasers over two millennia before they existed. People still use the design of the Archimedes screw in water pumps today, and modern scholars have tried to link him to the recently discovered Antikythera mechanism, an ancient “computer” of sorts that used mechanics to accurately chart astronomical data depending on the date it was set to.
It has long been difficult to separate fact from legend in the story of Archimedes’ life, from his death to his legendary discovery of how to differentiate gold from fool’s gold, but many of his works survived antiquity, and many others were quoted by other ancient writers. As a result, even while his life and death remain topics of debate, his writings and measurements are factually established and well known, and they range on everything from measuring an object’s density to measuring circles and parabolas.
The Renaissance spawned the use of the label “Renaissance Man” to describe a person who is extremely talented in multiple fields, and no discussion of the Renaissance is complete without the original “Renaissance Man”, Leonardo da Vinci. Indeed, if 100 people are asked to describe Leonardo in one word, they might give 100 answers. As the world’s most famous polymath and genius, Leonardo found time to be a painter, sculptor, architect, musician, scientist, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, geologist, cartographer, botanist, and writer.
It would be hard to determine which field Leonardo had the greatest influence in. His “Mona Lisa” and “The Last Supper” are among the most famous paintings of all time, standing up against even Michelangelo’s work. But even if he was not the age’s greatest artist, Leonardo may have conducted his most influential work was done in other fields. His emphasis on the importance of Nature would influence Enlightened philosophers centuries later, and he sketched speculative designs for gadgets like helicopters that would take another 4 centuries to create. Leonardo’s vision and philosophy were made possible by his astounding work as a mathematician, engineer and scientist. At a time when much of science was dictated by Church teachings, Leonardo studied geology and anatomy long before they truly even became scientific fields, and he used his incredible artistic abilities to sketch the famous Vitruvian Man, linking art and science together.
This book chronicles the amazing lives, writings and inventions of both men, analyzing their lasting legacies in art, medicine, math, science, and more. Along with pictures of important people, places, and events, you will learn about Archimedes and Leonardo like never before.
- Publication Date:
- 149233877X / 9781492338772
- Page Count:
- Binding Type:
- US Trade Paper
- Trim Size:
- 6" x 9"
- Black and White
- Related Categories:
- Biography & Autobiography / Scientists / General