22 interesting facts about Archimedes
Only a little is known about Archimedes’ life, though still more than about some of the other great minds of bygone times. Being a truly brilliant man, he forever wrote his biography in history as a talented inventor and an outstanding scientist. His life ended too soon, and who knows how much more he would have been able to develop science if he had not died so tragically?
Facts about Archimedes’ life & biography
- He made a huge contribution to the development of geometry, like Euclid did (interesting facts about Euclid).
- It was Archimedes who built the world’s first planetarium.
- The birthplace of the brilliant mathematician was the island of Sicily, now owned by Italy.
- The young Archimedes was trained in the scientific center of that time, the city of Alexandria. The library of Alexandria numbered more than 700 thousand manuscripts.
- Archimedes was the first to establish a relation between the body immersed in the liquid and the volume of the liquid displaced as a result.
- One of the inventions of Archimedes were catapults, unprecedented in those days machines capable of throwing projectiles weighing 400-550 pounds (200-250 kg).
- Little is known about the early period of Archimedes’ life. However, the ancient historian Plutarch wrote that Archimedes was obliged to his father by the propensity for science as father encouraged his studies since childhood.
- An Archimedes’ screw, a device invented by scientists for field irrigation, is still used for this purpose in some African countries, such as Egypt.
- Archimedes put forward theories about measuring the distance to other planets for many years before Galileo did the same.
- Even during the life of Archimedes, his name was shrouded in numerous legends based on his inventions.
- He had no disciples.
- Leonardo da Vinci, who invented the steam cannon, said that he relied on the work of Archimedes, who invented it first.
- Archimedes lived more than 2,300 years ago.
- He also invented the way of cubic equations solving.
- Archimedes invented a system of blocks that makes it easy to raise and lower heavy loads. It was used in the port of Syracuse.
- The Romans, who besieged Syracuse, couldn’t take the city by assault for a long time, because the defenders used the inventions of Archimedes for defence. Large and small catapults threw hail of nuclei on legionnaires’ heads, and special cranes called “Claw of Archimedes” turned roman ships upside down.
- All the biographies of Archimedes were written after his death.
- Archimedes invented the way to blind the attacking enemy soldiers by mirrors installed on the city defence wall. The genius scientist was 75 years old that time.
- Plutarch argued that Archimedes was so obsessed with mathematics that he often forgot to eat and generally to care about himself.
- A crater on the Moon and one of the asteroids were named in honor of Archimedes.
- The scientist died when Syracuse was taken by assault. The exact circumstances of his death are unknown, but information remains that he was killed by one of the Roman Legionnaires, despite the direct order of the Roman commander, Consul Marcellus, not to kill him in any case.
- Streets named after Archimedes exist in many cities & countries. In Greece, Netherlands and Russia, for example.