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Thread: Regarding Archimedes

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    Kyriakos's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Regarding Archimedes

    Regarding tales told of Archimedes, other than those about his enthusiasm when he managed to conceive of the law of flotation, his contempt for the Roman soldier who demanded he would cease his calculations on those circles he had drawn on sand and the epigram on his tomb where his discovery of the relation between the volumes of a sphere, a cone and a cylinder was accounted for, there is one other worth of mentioning:
    He once met, in a beach near Syracuse, a young boy and a slightly older and much taller youth. It was a warm day and those two were wearing white himatia without chitons underneath, as was usual for poorer people. Both left the right shoulder bare, with the fabric rising diagonally to the left shoulder where a pin held it in place, yet Archimedes noticed that in the way they had positioned themselves right next to each other the upper part of the child’s clothes was reaching exactly to the height of the lower part of the youth’s next to him. This formed an elegant, straight line, starting at the lower edge of the first cloth and ending to the upper edge of the other, and from a distance one would get the impression that it was all one continuous material instead of two distinct himatia.
    Despite his surprise, he immediately became aware that while he could notice the effect due to standing opposite those two, their position naturally rendered it impossible for them to witness and enjoy this harmonious sight.
    That they remained there, immobile, because they were indeed aware of the effect and meant for anyone coming near to observe it, was readily obvious; yet Archimedes couldn’t refrain from walking closer and asking just why they went into so much trouble so as to produce something they themselves weren’t allowed to observe, given that if they’d even attempt to steal a glance at it the delicate balance instantly would be ruined and therefore nothing would remain to be seen...
    The youth kept silent, but the child, being more impulsive, replied that Archimedes was wrong. It wasn’t at all true that they stood there in this manner out of an intention to present to others the form he saw. To be precise, they were fully oblivious that anyone would be seeing such a thing when coming from afar. They were standing so close to each other out of mere habit. Lastly, they weren’t moving at all because they had been waiting there for their father to return from the beach.
    It is said that then, as he was walking away, he thought that it isn’t as much that nature seamlessly presents us with mathematical symmetries, but that the overall number of elements which, unbeknownst to us, are woven together into any image is so vast that a small number of our own interests is always also contained within it.
    Λέων μεν ὄνυξι κρατεῖ, κέρασι δε βούς, ἄνθρωπος δε νῷι
    "While the lion prevails with its claws, and the ox through its horns, man does by his thinking"
    Anaxagoras of Klazomenae, 5th century BC










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    Roma_Victrix's Avatar Gatorade, is it in you?
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    Default Re: Regarding Archimedes

    If I were a Roman soldier or a Syrakousai Greek I would have arrested Archimedes right then and there, for clear possession and illicit use of the marijuana, because only the marijuana and the devil's weed would lead someone to trail off into such mind-bending, unorthodox, groovy, psychedelic thoughts about Greek boys and their clothing serving as metaphors for the mathematical ordering of the cosmos.



    Archimedes is known for many things, but I never knew about this one, so thanks for sharing. He was truly as eccentric as I had imagined him to be, what with all the apocryphal tales of him running out of the bathtub naked and shouting "Eureka" at every passerby because he figured out how the king of Syracuse was getting swindled on a gold deal.

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    Default Re: Regarding Archimedes

    Thread title had me thinking "yeah Archimedes has been drinking too much we need to do something".

    He's a true great. I love the pre-Pavlovian experiment where he conditioned Legionaries to sweat when they saw a rope.
    Jatte lambastes Calico Rat

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    Kyriakos's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: Regarding Archimedes

    Archimedes had even invented a cup (based on flow of liquid in interlinking space) which let the wine spill out once you drunk more than the advised amount ^_^
    Λέων μεν ὄνυξι κρατεῖ, κέρασι δε βούς, ἄνθρωπος δε νῷι
    "While the lion prevails with its claws, and the ox through its horns, man does by his thinking"
    Anaxagoras of Klazomenae, 5th century BC










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    LaMuerte's Avatar Senator
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    Default Re: Regarding Archimedes

    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclops View Post
    He's a true great. I love the pre-Pavlovian experiment where he conditioned Legionaries to sweat when they saw a rope.
    Could you elaborate? I haven't heard this one before, but it sounds quite interesting.

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    conon394's Avatar hoi polloi
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    Default Re: Regarding Archimedes

    He is referencing specifically this

    "However, Marcellus made his escape, and jesting with his own artificers and engineers, "Let us stop," said he, "fighting against this geometrical Briareus, who uses our ships like cups to ladle water from the sea, and has whipped and driven off in disgrace our sambuca, and with the many missiles which he shoots against us all at once, outdoes the hundred-handed monsters of mythology." 2 For in reality all the rest of the Syracusans were but a body for the designs of Archimedes, and his the one soul moving and managing everything; for all other weapons lay idle, and his alone were then employed by the city both in offence and defence. 3 At last the Romans became so fearful that, whenever they saw a bit of rope or a stick of timber projecting a little over the wall, "There it is," they cried, "Archimedes is training some engine upon us," and turned their backs and fled. Seeing this, Marcellus desisted from all fighting and assault, and thenceforth depended on a long siege."


    You can read the wholle here in the life of Marcellus section 14 ff (my quote is from section 17)

    http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/...arcellus*.html
    Last edited by conon394; October 13, 2019 at 02:01 PM.
    IN PATROCINIVM SVB Dromikaites

    'One day when I fly with my hands - up down the sky, like a bird'

    But if the cause be not good, the king himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs and arms and heads, chopped off in battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all 'We died at such a place; some swearing, some crying for surgeon, some upon their wives left poor behind them, some upon the debts they owe, some upon their children rawly left.

    Hyperides of Athens: We know, replied he, that Antipater is good, but we (the Demos of Athens) have no need of a master at present, even a good one.

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    LaMuerte's Avatar Senator
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    Default Re: Regarding Archimedes

    Quote Originally Posted by conon394 View Post
    You can read the wholle here in the life of Marcellus section 14 ff (my quat is from section 17)

    http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/...arcellus*.html
    Much appreciated.

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    Kyriakos's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: Regarding Archimedes

    So he at least knew of Briareos. Maybe the other two ekatoncheirae would show up.
    Or rather they were busy with petty fighting between themselves, the ridiculously shortsighted Seleukids and Ptolemies :/
    Λέων μεν ὄνυξι κρατεῖ, κέρασι δε βούς, ἄνθρωπος δε νῷι
    "While the lion prevails with its claws, and the ox through its horns, man does by his thinking"
    Anaxagoras of Klazomenae, 5th century BC










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    Default Re: Regarding Archimedes

    Quote Originally Posted by conon394 View Post
    He is referencing specifically this...
    Thx, I had forgotten the source which was why i was circumspect about referencing it.
    Jatte lambastes Calico Rat

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    Roma_Victrix's Avatar Gatorade, is it in you?
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    Default Re: Regarding Archimedes

    The Romans would have been rather scary against the Carthaginians had they not killed Archimedes and instead co-opted him to invent wheeled carriages with sunlight powered fiery death rays, steam-powered cannons and automatons complete with voice boxes and gear systems putting Antikythera mechanism to shame so that they could approach the enemy walls and put to sleep the night guard or bore the sentries to death with lengthy, rhetorical geometric solutions.

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    Kyriakos's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: Regarding Archimedes

    Maybe if he had stayed alive he would have created an iron suit, like in IronMan
    And blast his way through, like the second coming of Talos.
    Λέων μεν ὄνυξι κρατεῖ, κέρασι δε βούς, ἄνθρωπος δε νῷι
    "While the lion prevails with its claws, and the ox through its horns, man does by his thinking"
    Anaxagoras of Klazomenae, 5th century BC










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    Default Re: Regarding Archimedes

    Quote Originally Posted by Roma_Victrix View Post
    The Romans would have been rather scary against the Carthaginians had they not killed Archimedes and instead co-opted him to invent wheeled carriages with sunlight powered fiery death rays, steam-powered cannons and automatons complete with voice boxes and gear systems putting Antikythera mechanism to shame so that they could approach the enemy walls and put to sleep the night guard or bore the sentries to death with lengthy, rhetorical geometric solutions.
    He could talk about triangles while the legionnaires were scalene the walls?
    Jatte lambastes Calico Rat

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