Science and Technology in World History, Volume 1

The Ancient World and Classical Civilization

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About the Book

Science is a living, organic activity, the meaning and understanding of which have evolved incrementally over human history. This book, the first in a roughly chronological series, explores the development of the methodology and major ideas of science, in historical context, from ancient times to the decline of classical civilizations around 300 A.D. It includes details specific to the histories of specialized sciences including astronomy, medicine and physics—along with Roman engineering and Greek philosophy. It closely describes the contributions of such individuals as Pythagoras, Hippocrates, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Alexander the Great, Euclid, Archimedes, Ptolemy, Seneca, Pliny the Elder, and Galen.

About the Author(s)

David Deming is a professor of Arts & Sciences at the University of Oklahoma. A geophysicist, research scientist and historian, he has written on topics ranging from the history of science to climate change and energy resources.

Bibliographic Details

David Deming

Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 275
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2010
pISBN: 978-0-7864-3932-4
eISBN: 978-0-7864-5657-4
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface      1
Introduction      7
Science, Religion and Epistemology      7
Before the Greeks      9

1. The Greeks (c. 600–300 B.C.)      15
Intellectual Freedom, Naturalism, and Demonstration      16
The Ionians (c. 600–400 B.C.)      18
Pythagoras (c. 569–475 B.C.)      29
Parmenides (c. 520–450 B.C.) and the Eleatics      35
Empedocles (c. 492–432 B.C.)      37
Hippocrates of Cos (c. 460–370 B.C.)      40
The Greco–Persian Wars (c. 499–448 B.C.)      48
Socrates (470–399 B.C.)      62
Plato (428 –348 B.C.)      71
Philip (382–336 B.C.) and Alexander (356 –323 B.C.)      86
Aristotle (384 –322 B.C.)      101

2. Hellenistic Science (c. 300 B.C.–A.D. 200)      122
The Ptolemaic Kings      122
Euclid (c. 325 –265 B.C.)      127
Strato of Lampsacus (c. 340–270 B.C.)      128
Aristarchus of Samos (310–230 B.C.)      131
Eratosthenes (276–195 B.C.)      133
Archimedes (287–212 B.C.) and the Punic Wars (264–146 B.C.)      136
Hipparchus (c. 190–120 B.C.)      158
Claudius Ptolemy (c. A.D. 100–170)      160

3. Roman Engineering      170
Lack of Originality in Science and Philosophy      170
Concrete and the Arch      171
Roads      172
Aqueducts      174
Baths      174
Sewers      175
Bridges      175

4. The Roman Writers      178
Vitruvius Pollio: On Architecture (c. 30 B.C.)      178
Lucius Annaeus Seneca (c. 4 B.C.–A.D. 65) and Nero (A.D. 37–68)      181
Pliny the Elder (A.D. 23–79)      191
Galen (c. A.D. 129 –200)      195

5. Hellenistic Philosophy in Rome      204
Epicureanism (c. 300 B.C.–A.D. 300)      204
Stoicism (c. 300 B.C.–A.D. 200)      209
Neoplatonism (c. A.D. 250–550)      215

Conclusion      219
Chapter Notes      221
Bibliography      255
Index      263

Book Reviews & Awards

“interesting…recommended”—Choice.