[LMB] OT: Dark Ages [not], was, What makes ...

Parish, James jparish at siue.edu
Mon Aug 26 13:22:54 BST 2019


markus baur wrote:
> but even then the greek had infinitesimals and got awfully close to 
> integral calculus (archimede if memory serves9

I think it's a bit of an overstatement to say "the Greeks had 
infinitesimals". Archimedes did, and he came very close to integral 
calculus. However, his techniques did not fit the Greek standards of 
rigor, which is why he didn't tell anyone (as far as we know) except 
Eratosthenes. The people who developed integral calculus in the modern 
era were a bit more lax in their standards; Newton took heavy flak for 
this from George Berkeley, and there were several attempts to clean 
things up before the epsilon-delta formalism was introduced in the early 
1800s.

Jim Parish



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