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Jean Le Rond d AlembertQuoteThus metaphysics and mathematics are among all the sciences that belong to reason those in which imagination has the greatest role I beg pardon of those delicate spirits who are detractors of mathematics for saying this The imagination in a mathematician who creates makes no less difference than in a poet who invents Of all the great men of antiquity Archimedes may be the one who most deserves to be placed beside Homer Discours Preliminaire de L Encyclopedie 47-48Jean Le Rond d Alembert was a French mathematician and physicist who developed the early stages of the science now known as calculus He was also the leading editor in Diderot s Encyclopedie where the quote was taken from above Along with Diderot and Voltaire he was one of the leading figures of the enlightenment in France and studied many interesting ideas of science and mathematics Alembert was born in Paris France on November 16 1717 He was the illegitimate child of the chevalier Desctouches When Jean was very little his mother left him on the front steps of St Jean-le-Rond a church and he was then named after the church as was customary for this situation Later he was moved to a family outside of the cathedral and this family treated him well and provided money for his education In the same year Alembert was elected into the French Academy his first essays on calculus were noticed This was probably due to the influence of his father Nearly all of his mathematical works were produced in the years 1743-1754 one of which he discuses the internal forces of inertia and later the principal of fluids Due to Alembert being a scientist and mathematician the resources used did not have much information on Alembert s opinion on the meaning of life and so on so the following are mearly inferences on what Jean le Rond D Alembert probably believed in This is
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