Videnskabshistorisk Selskab

Vincenzo De Risi

Vincenzo De Risi,
Research group director
Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin:

Lambert's Epistemology of Geometry and the Parallel Postulate
                  postage stampI will discuss the epistemology of mathematics of J.H. Lambert in the context of his attempt to prove the Parallel Postulate (Theorie der Parallellinien, 1766). I will show how Lambert’s epistemological ideas directed his mathematical studies on the foundations of geometry, and represented an important step forward compared with the previous and more classical attempts to prove the Parallel Postulate (Clavius, Wallis, Leibniz, Saccheri, et al.). Lambert’s conception of the relations between mathematical definitions and axioms, in fact, paved the way for the non-Euclidean revolution in the 1830s. I will also deal with the reception of Lambert's essay in late-18th-century and 19th-century Germany.

tirsdag den 16. juni 2015, kl. 17

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In English