A series of hidden texts written by the ancient Greek mathematician Archimedes are being revealed by US scientists.I wouldn't understand any of what he wrote even if I knew Greek, but I still marvel at the abilities of scientists who figured all this out.
Until now, the pages have remained obscured by paintings and texts laid down on top of the original writings.
Using a non-destructive technique known as X-ray fluorescence, the researchers are able to peer through these later additions to read the underlying text.
The goatskin parchment records key details of Archimedes' work, considered the foundation of modern mathematics.
The writings include the only Greek version of On Floating Bodies known to exist, and the only surviving ancient copies of The Method of Mechanical Theorems and the Stomachion.
Wednesday, August 02, 2006
Modern scientists have figured out a way to read what was written in Archimedes' original text despite the fact that the text had been scraped off, written over, and then painted over.
Posted by Betsy Newmark at 6:38 PM