Article ID: CBB174453623

Geometry and Genre in Columella (2017)


Columella's discussion of land measurement in Book 5 of the Res rustica does more than explain how to calculate the areas of variously shaped fields. This geometrical excursus allows the author to delimit and transgress the boundaries of res rustica by injecting practical handbook mathematics into his otherwise highbrow manual, whose audience comprises both the practical farmer and the leisured litterateur. Columella displays his mastery of all aspects of agriculture while simultaneously elevating the literary status of geometrical calculation, creating a text that is technical yet transcends generic constraints.

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Authors & Contributors
Hogendijk, Jan P.
Nikolantonakis, Konstantinos
Taisbak, Christian Marinus
Solère, Jean-Luc
Aboav, David
Durán, Antonio J.
Historia Mathematica
Science in Context
Archive for History of Exact Sciences
Zeitschrift für Geschichte der Arabisch-Islamischen Wissenschaften
Revue d'Histoire des Sciences
Neusis: The Greek Journal for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology
Real Sociedad Matemática Española
Fundació Bernat Metge
Solid geometry
Transmission of texts
Menelaos of Alexandria
al-Sijzi, Ahmad Ibn Muhammad Ibn ‘Abd al-Jalil
Hippocrates of Chios
Time Periods
3rd century
Middle and Near East

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