Article ID: CBB699595865

Giusto Bellavitis e la sua Geometria di Derivazione (2021)


Giusto Bellavitis (1803-1880), now mainly regarded for his theory of equipollences, was among the frst Italian geometers, in 19th century, who devoted himself to the study of modern theories on projective transformations that were spreading among the transalpine geometers. His studies on geometric transformations – to which he refers with the term of derivations, since they make it possible to derive the properties of one figure from those of another one – are generally unknown. It is remarkable that Bellavitis, in "Saggio di Geometria derivata" (1838), besides having suggested the idea of quadric inversion, which would be studied about twenty years later by Thomas Archer Hirst (1830-1892), also provided a general definition of transformation, which is the same that Giovanni Virginio Schiaparelli (1835-1910) refers to in 1862 as conic transformation. In this paper, Bellavitis’ work is taken as a case-study of the importance, in the history of mathematics, to conceive concepts and theories within a context of scientifc isolation, before their spreading within the scientifc community. This paper also tries to shed light on the reasons why Bellavitis’ works remained unknown for a long time. Finally, the paper tries to assess to what extent, some decades after their discovery, Bellavitis’ works have contributed, although not decisively, to rethink, from an historical and critical standpoint, the development of the theory of geometric transformations.

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Authors & Contributors
Vaccaro, Maria Alessandra
Cerroni, Cinzia
Brioist, Pascal
Giacardi, Livia
Palmerino, Carla Rita
Mertens, Manuel
Bollettino di Storia delle Scienze Matematiche
Revue d'Histoire des Mathématiques
History of Science
Paedagogica Historica: International Journal of the History of Education
Early Science and Medicine: A Journal for the Study of Science, Technology and Medicine in the Pre-modern Period
Foundations of Science
Harvard University Press
Edizioni ETS
Firenze University Press
Birkhäuser Basel
Edizioni di Storia e Letteratura
Correspondence and corresponding
Science education and teaching
Mathematics education
Commandino, Federico
Galilei, Galileo
Cremona, Luigi
Pacioli, Luca
Time Periods
19th century
16th century
20th century, early
20th century
17th century
Florence (Italy)
Tuscany (Italy)

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