Correspondence of John Wallis (1616-1703): Volume III (October 1668- December 1671)

Hardcover | June 15, 2012

byPhilip Beeley, Christoph J. Scriba

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Containing many previously unpublished letters, this third volume of a six volume collection of the complete correspondence of John Wallis (1616-1703), documents an important period in the history of the Royal Society and the University of Oxford. By providing access to these letters, thispainstakingly crafted edition will enable readers to gain a deeper and richer awareness of the intellectual culture on which the growth of scientific knowledge in early modern Europe was based. Wallis was Savilian Professor of Geometry of Oxford from 1649 until his death, and was a founding member of the Royal Society and a central figure in the scientific and intellectual history of England. In the period covered Wallis is engaged in scientific debates on techniques for determining areascontained by curves (quadratures) and figures (cubatures), as well as on the theory of motion and the nature of the tides. He also continues to attack the mathematical undertakings of Thomas Hobbes and to respond to attacks which the philosopher in turn levels against him. We also find evidence forthe consolidation of mathematics as an academic discipline in the University of Oxford just fifty years after the establishment of the first mathematical lecturerships. Wallis is called upon more than once to deliver ceremonial lectures on mathematical topics to foreign dignitaries visiting theUniversity. At the same time the volume allows us to witness the beginnings of a remarkable development in mathematical publishing. Many of Wallis's letters to Henry Oldenburg, secretary of the Royal Society, on a variety of topics in the mathematical and physical sciences, are transformed into articles andpublished in Oldenburg's journal, the Philosophical Transactions. Part of the reason for this development also becomes clear in the letters: the long and costly process of publishing mathematical books such as Wallis's three part Mechanica: sive de motu. This volume not only signals themodernization of mathematics in the second half of the seventeenth century but we also see two new figures emerge for the first time, whose careers are in different ways closely associated with Wallis: Isaac Newton and Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz.

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Containing many previously unpublished letters, this third volume of a six volume collection of the complete correspondence of John Wallis (1616-1703), documents an important period in the history of the Royal Society and the University of Oxford. By providing access to these letters, thispainstakingly crafted edition will enable reade...

Philip Beeley is Research Fellow in the Faculty of History and Fellow of Linacre College, Oxford. He has held teaching and research posts at the Technical University Berlin, and at the universities of Hamburg and Munster, where he was associate editor of the Academy Edition of Leibniz's philosophical writings. Christoph J. Scriba is Em...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:640 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.98 inPublished:June 15, 2012Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198569475

ISBN - 13:9780198569473

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

1. Introduction2. Editorial principles and abbreviations3. Correspondence4. Biographies of correspondents5. List of manuscripts

Editorial Reviews

Review from other book by this author: '... will be of interest to historians of science and mathematics at all levels.' --Zentralblatt MATH