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Medieval Cosmology: Theories of Infinity, Place, Time, Void, and the Plurality of Worlds
These selections from Le système du monde, the classic ten-volume history of the physical sciences written by the great French physicist Pierre Duhem (1861-1916), focus on cosmology, Duhem's greatest interest. By reconsidering the work of such Arab and Christian scholars as Averroes, Avicenna, Gregory of Rimini, Albert of Saxony, Nicole Oresme, Duns Scotus, and William of ...more
Paperback, 642 pages
Published August 15th 1987 by University of Chicago Press
(first published January 1st 1985)
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Feb 18, 2013 Peter Mcloughlin rated it really liked it · review of another edition
a pretty good book. Mostly about ideas the medieval scholars had that were precursors to the scientific revolution of the 17th century. The developments in speculative philosophy concerning infinity, Place, the void, motion and time show that the medievals veiw of the cosmos was evolving and that the later scientific revolution wasn't as radical a change as previously thought. Nice to know what people thought about the world as they fumbled around in the dark.
The Middle Age physicists were able to formulate precise, very modern questions and offer penetratingly clear answers to questions on infinity (laying the foundations of calculus) and on the fundamentals undergirding even modern physics: place, time (and its relativity), void, and the "plurality of the worlds" (i.e., what's called "parallel universes" today).
Pierre Maurice Marie Duhem (French: [pjɛʁ moʁis maʁi dy.ɛm] was a French physicist, mathematician, historian and philosopher of science. He is best known for his work on chemical thermodynamics, for his philosophical writings on the indeterminacy of experimental criteria, and for his historical research into the science of the European Middle Ages. As a scientist, Duhem also contributed to hydrody ...more