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Archimedes: What Contributions Did He Make
To the Fields of Math and Science?
By: Meaghan Johnson
03/24/14

Abstract
Archimedes was both a famous scientist and mathematician who did many things in his lifetime. Two of the most well- known ideas of his were the principle of hydrostatics and the invention of the ‘death ray,’ a war machine. His is also known for his involvement in pycnometry, the discovery of why a lever works the way it does, the invention of bot the catapult and the ‘giant claw,’ and many major writings involving mathematical findings. He created his own Greek number system, calculus proofs, and invented both ‘integral calculus’ and ‘differential calculus,’ a form derived from ‘integral calculus.’ Archimedes found how to measure a circle, discovered the quadrants of a parabola, and calculated the number of sand grains in the universe. He is one of the most well- known people to have ever lived, as well as being considered by many to be one of the greatest scientists and mathematicians of all time.

Archimedes, who is commonly thought to be the greatest mathematician and scientist of antiquity to ever exist, created many works that are still observed today. One of these works, which was one of his more famous works that gained him popularity, was the “Death Ray” (Ancient Greece). He was born around 287 BC in Syracuse, Sicily in the colony of Magna Graecia, and was killed in Syracuse by a Roman soldier around 212 BC (NYU). Archimedes was the son of an astronomer named Phidias, which is known because it was written in one of Archimedes’ works, The Sandreckoner (St. Andrews). Also, though it has not been proven, just accepted, is that he was probably also related to Hieron II, the king of Syracuse. Archimedes probably studied in Alexandria, Egypt, under the followers of Euclid. Euclid was the most prominent mathematician of Greco- Roman antiquity (Encyclopedia Britannica). Archimedes is known for his involvement in several fields of science, including hydrostatics, static mechanics, and pycnometry (the measuremen...

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