Institute and Museum of History of Science, Florence, ITALY

Evangelista Torricelli

5. Diffusion of the work of Torricelli in France



Title page of Opera
Geometrica
published
in Florence in 1664.

The scientific activity of Torricelli was widely diffused in France, especially on the initiative of Fr. François du Verdus. He sent a report of the mercury experiment to Niceron [see his letter to Torricelli of July 1644 in Opere dei discepoli di Galileo - Carteggio, a cura di P. Galluzzi e M. Torrini, Florence, Giunti-Barbèra, 1975, vol. I, p. 146]. Unfortunately the relations between the scientists of the two communities was made difficult by the discussions of the priority of the discovery of the quadrature of the cycloid, and the mercury experiment. Torricelli was profoundly upset by these events. Convinced that others wished to claim his discoveries for themselves, he decided to defend himself by publishing the letters he exchanged with the French scientists.

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