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A Budget of Paradoxes, Volume I by De Morgan

Poincare looked blank and said


[278]

This was John Arbuthnot (c. 1658-1735), the mathematician, physician and wit. He was intimate with Pope and Swift, and was Royal physician to Queen Anne. Besides various satires he published a translation of Huyghens's work on probabilities (1692) and a well-known treatise on ancient coins, weights, and measures (1727).

[279] Greene (1678-1730) was a very eccentric individual and was generally ridiculed by his contemporaries. In his will he directed that his body be dissected and his skeleton hung in the library of King's College, Cambridge. Unfortunately for his fame, this wish was never carried out.

[280] This was the historian, Robert Sanderson (1660-1741), who spent most of his life at Cambridge.

[281] I presume this was William Jones (1675-1749) the friend of Newton and Halley, vice-president of the Royal Society, in whose _Synopsis Palmariorum Matheseos_ (1706) the symbol [pi] is first used for the circle ratio.

[282] This was the _Geometrica solidorum, sive materiae, seu de varia compositione, progressione, rationeque velocitatum_, Cambridge, 1712. The work was parodied in _A Taste of Philosophical Fanaticism ... by a gentleman of the University of Gratz_.

[283] The antiquary and scientist (1690-1754), president of the Royal Society, member of the Academie, friend of Newton, and authority on numismatics.

style="text-align: justify;">[284] She was Catherine Barton, Newton's step-niece. She married John Conduitt, master of the mint, who collected materials for a life of Newton.

_A propos_ of Mrs. Conduitt's life of her illustrious uncle, Sir George Greenhill tells a very good story on Poincare, the well-known French mathematician. At an address given by the latter at the International Congress of Mathematicians held in Rome in 1908 he spoke of the story of Newton and the apple as a mere fable. After the address Sir George asked him why he had done so, saying that the story was first published by Voltaire, who had heard it from Newton's niece, Mrs. Conduitt. Poincare looked blank and said, "Newton, et la niece de Newton, et Voltaire,--non! je ne vous comprends pas!" He had thought Sir George meant Professor Volterra of Rome, whose name in French is Voltaire, and who could not possibly have known a niece of Newton without bridging a century or so.

[285] This was the Edmund Turnor (1755-1829) who wrote the _Collections for the Town and Soke of Grantham, containing authentic Memoirs of Sir Isaac Newton, from Lord Portsmouth's Manuscripts_, London, 1806.

[286] It may be recalled to mind that Sir David (1781-1868) wrote a life of Newton (1855).

[287] "They are in the country. We rejoice."

[288] "I am here, chatterbox, suck!"

[289] "I have been graduated! I decline!"

[290] Giovanni Castiglioni (Castillon, Castiglione), was born at Castiglione, in Tuscany, in 1708, and died at Berlin in 1791. He was professor of mathematics at Utrecht and at Berlin. He wrote on De Moivre's equations (1762), Cardan's rule (1783), and Euclid's treatment of parallels (1788-89).

[291] This was the _Isaaci Newtoni, equitis aurati, opuscula mathematica, philosophica et philologica_, Lausannae & Genevae, 1744.

[292] At London, 4to.

[293] "All the English attribute it to Newton."


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