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Thread: Roger Boscovich

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2015

    Roger Boscovich

    The Royal Society and the Jesuits can wax eloquent and effusively about their members who deserve all the acclaim this world can shower on them - and thus upon themselves.

    I would be more interested to know if Tesla's father new the man than how his theories were formative in influencing people who proved him wrong. Britannica spells his given names one way and others give it mostly in an anglicized manner. It is true that we hear very little about this man but it is not true (as Jonathan Gray would have us believe - or people on his site say) that he deserves to be heralded as a scientist above all others or one whose theories have been conspiratorially secreted away.

    S.J., F.R.S., 1711-1787
    Studies in His Life and Work on the 250th Anniversary of His Birth
    Published 1961 – Library of Congress Catalog Card #63-21822

    Jacket notes:
    The extraordinary career of Fr. Boscovich has long deserved the extended treatment now accorded him in this volume in which an international group of scientists tell of this 18th century Jugoslav Jesuit who distinguished himself in literary, scientific and diplomatic circles of all Europe. He was a mathematician, physicist, astronomer, geodesist, engineer and architect as well as poet, diplomatist, social figure and much-traveled personality. He combined Roman subtlety with Serb vigor, and Slavonic intensity of imagination with Western logical precision. He published about a hundred books and papers, of which de Lalande, the French astronomer said, “His magnum opus, his Theoria, endeavored to create a system of Natural Philosophy reducing to a single law all the forces of nature.” The work was the first general mathematical theory of atomism and made its author famous when it appeared in 1758. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society and was lionized in London, Oxford and Cambridge; he became a corresponding member of the French Academie. He was consulted by Pope Benedict XIV about the cracks in the Dome of St.Peter’s and recommended the circling of the cupola with five iron rings which allayed the fears of the collapse of Michaelangelo’s masterpiece.

    This volume contains an extended biographical essay, two essays on his atomism, one on the philosophical and historical aspects of his ideas, the other a detailed analysis of the origin and arguments of the Theoria. Other papers describe his influence on Faraday, Priestley and Davy, and of the field in which he was a master: applied mathematics and the theory, design and use of optical instruments; the volume concludes with an analysis of Boscovich’s contribution to the theory of the combination of observations—a fitting tribute from Dr. Churchill Eisenhart, Chief, Statistical Laboratory, Bureau of Standards, Washington. D.C.
    (---End of Jacket Notes.)

    Foreword by SIR HAROLD HARTLEY G.C.V.O., F.R.S.

    For many of us Boscovich hitherto has been a shadowy figure that we have met flitting through the history of atomism with his famous curve. We knew of his influence on Faraday and of Kelvin’s flirtation with his theory, finally describing his assumptions as ‘Boscovichianism pure and simple’. The obstacles in the way of a better appreciation of him were the absence of any biography in the English language and the formidable size and scarcity of the only translation of the Theoria, itself a very rare book. Now, at long last, thanks to the devotion of Mr. Lancelot Whyte and the studies of his colleagues, we can read the life history of this brilliant polymath and Jesuit diplomat whose political activities took him to many of the European capitals in the troubled years of the War of the Austrian Successions and the Even Years War between Britain and France. This volume of essays comes most appropriately to celebrate the bicentenary of the publication of the Theoria, Boscovich’s definitive work but by no means his only claim to fame.
    Professor Elizabeth Hill’s biographical essay gives us a fascinating picture of the education and novitiate at Rome in the stern régime of the Jesuit Order of the brilliant boy from Ragusa, as his birthplace was known to use before nationalism changed its name to Dubrovnik. Equally gifted as a latinist and a mathematician, the darling of intellectual society, and, as Professor Hill admits, a little of a snob, Boscovich’s eminence as a scholar and his adroit manœuvres were employed in many diplomatic missions, the first on behalf of the Republic of Russia, which he never revisited. However, Boscovich never allowed these preoccupations to interfere with his work as a scientist and the essays in this volume show the diversity and significance of his contributions to geometry, astronomy, hydrography, instrumentation and statistics, in addition to ‘his great attempt to understand the structure of the universe in terms of a single idea’. His advice, too, was sought and taken on engineering problems, the draining of the Pontine marshes and the stability of the dome of St. Peter’s.

    Historically one of the main interests of these essays is the help they give us in evaluating the influence of Boscovich on scientific thought, particularly through the Theoria. As the authors point out his influence was felt particularly by British scientists. There will probably be general agreement that his influence on Faraday and through Faraday on Clerk Maxwell affected the whole trend of physical theory in the nineteenth century. His influence on chemistry is a more open question. As Mr. Whyte points out there were two schools of thought in atomic ideas—naïve atomism and point atomism. Professor Pearce Williams in his stimulating essay reminds us that Thomas Thompson lost his enthusiasm for point atoms in the third edition of his textbook in favour of Dalton’s naïve atoms. Davy seems to have become an empiricist eschewing theory as was shown by his rejection of Herpath’s pioneer paper on kinetic theory of gases in 1821. And some may argue that structural chemistry, despite all the various hypotheses of chemists, was in fact the empirical outcome of their continuous discoveries of new organic compounds until the comparison of their compositions revealed certain underlying regularities. William Odling, one of the main protagonists of chemical theory in the 1850’s, often told me that the chemists of his day were influenced only by chemical arguments and not by physical evidence until Cannizzaro’s great essay of 1858. Be that as it may, all the authors of this volume of essays will have earned the gratitude of English speaking scientists by giving us for the first time this most enlightening picture of Father Boscovich which establishes his position as one of the great intellectual figures of all ages."

    [DOC]ROGER JOSEPH BOSCOVICH - Observer Physics

    by LL Whyte - ‎Cited by 32 - ‎Related articles
    The extraordinary career of Fr. Boscovich has long deserved the extended treatment now accorded him in this volume in which an international group of ...
    Last edited by R_Baird; 02-06-2016 at 08:25 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    It is the area of expertise that the various authors say Boscovich had which entitles him renown for being a geodesist which drew me to research him today. That is because I expected to find Tesla was working with and influenced by him. The following excerpt from Roger Anderton tells us this is true and he is right about Tesla's theories and papers going Black around the era of WWll. However true it may be, I would be remiss if I did not point out Tesla had total recall and little need to write things down. In the matter of his unified force field work I do believe he had to work with others and he would have had to write the ideas down, so I am agreeing with Roger.

    Roger Anderton
    [email protected]
    There has been an attempt by persons unknown to divert attention from the Unified field Theory. In continuation from my article in Nexus vol.8 no.5 (18th Cent. Unified Field Theory), I have found that although we do not know the theory of Tesla; possibly the greatest scientist of the 19th/20th Century because the papers of his theory mysteriously disappeared during World War II, we do know the theory that he was working from.

    Tesla was working from Boscovich’s theory. (see picture)
    Nikola Tesla, with Rudjer Boscovich's book Theoria Philosophiae Naturalis, in front of the spiral coil of his high-frequency transformer at East Houston Street, New York.

    If you know nothing and are only beginning to learn about reality - the study of two great men in the 20th Century can shed light on everything you need to know. They knew and had direct cognition of an enlightened sort which went back to the dim past. In fact Tesla once thought he must have communicated with aliens because of the antiquity of the knowledge.

    "Both men were, and remain, extraordinarily influential in their respective fields: Tesla in physics, Vivekananda in Hinduism.

    The idea that the pair did become friends and attempted to find commonalities in their seemingly polar-opposite pursuits, does sound improbable. Yet, their friendship is well-documented, as is their attempt to work out a mathematical proof for the ideas central to their respective ideologies—how the universe works, and that matter and energy are in fact one. Their ideas and their unity of thought are remarkable on more than one level. Not only do they demonstrate accord between science and religion, they also bring to light the fact that scientific ideas accepted as cutting-edge modern today, were actually divined thousands of years ago."
    Last edited by R_Baird; 02-06-2016 at 08:50 AM.

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