Archimedes of Syracuse was considered one of the most important intellectual figures of ancient Greece, doing work in physics, astronomy, engineering and, what was more widely recognized, mathematics.
Among his most remarkable works are the fundamentals of hydrostatics and statics, as well as the first to come close almost exactly to the number Pi.
In this article you will find a selection of Archimedes’ best phrases, commented.
Great Archimedes Phrases
Thanks to their work, we were able to acquire the first knowledge in mathematics and physics. A curiosity of this character is that he is credited with the term Eureka! which expresses the enthusiasm to decipher something.
Due to his importance as a historical and inspirational figure, we will review Archimedes’ most notable phrases below.
A popular phrase to express satisfaction when we find the answer to something. His story is quite interesting as it is said that Archimedes ran naked into his bathroom, excited to find that he could measure the density of objects with the measurement of an object’s displacement in water relative to its weight. Everything has been said by Vitruvius Pollion.
2. Give me a foothold and I will move the earth.
Show your confidence in your ability to discover complex things about the world.
3. I learn that some, whether they are my contemporaries or my successors, by means of the method, once established, will also be able to discover other theorems, which have not yet occurred to me.
Talk about the ability to discover more things from the method of mechanics.
4. There are things that seem incredible to most men who haven’t studied math.
Mathematics rules almost everything in the world. From shapes to sounds.
5. I will state the first theorem that I came to know through mechanics, namely that any segment of a section of a cone at right angles (i.e. a parabola) is the four third of the triangle which has the same base and equal height.
A reference to how you would start your work and the texts that would be included in it.
6. Man has always learned from the past.
It is necessary to learn the lessons of our past to build a better future.
7. From the last proposition, it immediately follows that the center of gravity of any triangle is at the intersection of lines drawn from any two angles at the midpoints of opposite sides, respectively.
A reference to his approach to gravity in a triangular space.
8. The one who has tried and has not succeeded is superior to the one who has not tried.
When you try something, even if you don’t succeed, it is possible to have a little satisfaction. Instead of bearing the regret of not having done it.
9. The diameter of the earth is greater than the diameter of the moon, and the diameter of the sun is greater than the diameter of the earth.
A sample of his works concerning astronomy.
10. In any triangle, the center of gravity is on a straight line joining any angle with the midpoint of the opposite side.
A reference to how gravity works in a space.
11. Those who claim to discover everything, but find no proof, can be seen as pretending to discover the impossible.
You can always approximate something by knowing it. But sometimes the truth can remain a mystery.
12. The shortest distance between two points is a straight line.
Straight lines are a quick way to get to a point.
13. Rise above yourself and capture the world.
Keep an open mind and stay open to the sights of the world.
14. This procedure is no less useful even for the proof of the theorems themselves; because some things were first made clear to me by a mechanical method, although afterwards they had to be demonstrated by geometry.
Things can have an origin, but they can also be derived in other ways.
15. After all, you can’t learn history backwards!
We cannot go into the past, only move forward.
16. He who knows how to speak also knows when to be silent.
You not only need to be sure that you know what to say, but also when to remain silent.
17. I did it!
The way we can translate Eureka!
18. I am convinced that the method of mechanical theorems will be very useful for mathematics.
For Archimedes, everything has a certain connection with mathematics.
19. Looking back is worth more than looking forward.
With hindsight, we can analyze our failures to better overcome an obstacle.
20. Any body submerged in a liquid undergoes a vertical upward thrust equal to the weight of the dislodged liquid.
On the effect of the water it produces on objects.
21. Who knows what to do, also knows when.
Sometimes you have to wait for the right time, instead of being the fastest.
22. The center of gravity of any hemisphere is in the straight line which is its axis, and it divides said straight line in such a way that the part adjacent to the surface of the hemisphere has with the remaining part the relation that 5 a to 3.
His discovery of gravity in triangles later enabled him to create theories of gravity between distances.
23. Some things, although they are first clarified to me using mechanical devices, then need to be geometrically tested, as this method does not provide genuine evidence.
The geometry allows to have a visualization of the theories.
24. The quantities are in equilibrium at distances reciprocally proportional to their weights.
Balance is achieved by balancing weights in a similar way.
25. Mathematics only reveals its secrets to those who approach them with pure love, for their own beauty.
Passion for mathematics.
26. The game is a fundamental condition to be serious.
You can’t take everything to heart, you also have to have a playful spirit.
27. I will give each of the other theorems studied by the same method. Then, at the end of the book, I will give proofs of geometric propositions.
Another reference to how he would put his book together and how it ends.
28. The center of gravity of any parallelogram is on the straight line joining the midpoints of the opposite sides.
Equilibrium helps maintain adequate flow between points.
29. Dreams are the hopes of fools.
It is good to dream, but not to cling to illusions.
30. Aristarco of Samos produced a book containing some hypotheses, in which the premises led to the result that the size of the universe is several times larger than what is now called by that name.
Referring to the work of one of his predecessors.
31. Give me a long enough lever and a fulcrum to place it, and I will move the world.
Referring to how you can explain various natural phenomena.
32. Of course, if one has previously acquired, by the mechanical method, a certain knowledge of the problems, it is easier to find the demonstrative path.
For Archimedes, the mechanical method is the beginning of many sciences.
33. Don’t disturb my circles.
Never stop criticizing the passions of others.
34. The center of gravity of any cone is the point that divides its axis so that the part adjacent to the vertex is triple.
Another reference to how gravity works.
35. I thought it appropriate … to explain in detail in the same book the peculiarity of a certain method, by which it will be possible … to study some of the problems of mathematics by means of the mecanic.
Archimedes tried to be as detailed as possible in his book.
36. Any body immersed in a liquid undergoes a vertical and upward thrust equal to the weight of the dislodged liquid.
Talk about his discovery of the movement of objects when they touch water.
37. How many theorems of geometry which at first seemed impracticable have been successfully solved!
Things that seemed inaccessible before can now become part of everyday life.
38. Equal weights at equal distances are in equilibrium, and equal weights at unequal distances are not in equilibrium, but tilt towards the weight at the greater distance.
To maintain a correct balance, objects must share the same qualities.
39. Two sizes, whether commensurable or immeasurable, balance each other at distances reciprocally proportional to the sizes.
It doesn’t matter if the elements have any differences between them, as long as they maintain similarities in weight and distance.
40. His hypotheses are that the fixed stars and the Sun remain stationary, that the Earth revolves around the Sun in the circumference of a circle, with the Sun located at the center of the orbit, and that the sphere of fixed stars, located around the same center as the Sun, it is so large that the circle in which it is supposed to rotate the Earth is in the same proportion to the distance of fixed stars as the center of the sphere on its surface.
On the work of Aristarco of Samos which represented an innovation for the astronomy of the time.
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