Robert Grosseteste and the Four Elements

Robert Grosseteste and the Four Elements

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Author(s)

Author(s): Amelia Carolina Sparavigna

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DOI: 10.18483/ijSci.362 418 971 42-45 Volume 2 - Dec 2013

Abstract

De Impressionibus Elementorum is a treatise written by Robert Grosseteste, English scientist and philosopher, shortly after 1220 AD. In this treatise we can find a discussion of some phenomena involving the four classical elements (air, water, fire and earth), in the framework of an Aristotelian physics of the atmosphere. For its referring to experiments, this treatise strongly differentiates from similar previous works. Moreover, it contains some descriptions of phase transitions which are rather interesting, in particular when Grosseteste is discussing of bubbles.

Keywords

History of Science, Medieval Science

References

  1. N. Lewis, Robert Grosseteste, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Winter 2010 Edition), http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/grosseteste
  2. A.C. Sparavigna, On the Rainbow, a Robert Grosseteste’s Treatise on Optics, The International Journal of Sciences, Volume 2, Issue 9, Pages 108-113
  3. Aristotle, Meteorology, Book 1, Part 10, translated by E.W. Webster, available as classics.mit.edu/Aristotle/meteorology.mb.txt
  4. M. Allaby, Atmosphere: a Scientific History of Air, Weather and Climate, Facts On File Inc., Infobase Publishing, New York, 2009
  5. C. Donald Ahrens, Essentials of Meteorology: An Invitation to the Atmosphere, Cengage Learning, Dec 30, 2010
  6. R.C. Dales, The Scientific Achievement of the Middle Ages, University of Pennsylvania Press, 1973
  7. J.L.E. Dreyer, A History of Astronomy from Thales to Kepler, formerly titled, History of the Planetary Systems from Thales to Kepler, revised with a foreword by W. H. Stahl, Dover Publications, 1953
  8. Medieval History, by Lynn Harry Nelson, Emeritus Professor of Medieval History, The University of Kansas, http://www.vlib.us/medieval/lectures/gerbert.html
  9. Francis of Assisi was born in 1182. Son of a wealthy merchant in Assisi, he lived as a wealthy young man. After a pilgrimage in Rome, he started to live in poverty as a friar, and founded the Franciscan order, authorized in 1210 by Pope Innocent III. He is considered the author of the “Cantico delle Creature”, in English known as the Canticle of the Sun. This is a religious song, considered to be among the first works written in the Italian language. In it, besides Brother Sun and Sister Moon, the Canticle thanks God for Brother Wind, Sister Water, Brother Fire and Mother Earth, that is he thanks God for the Creation. Francis of Assisi composed most of the canticle in late 1224 while recovering from an illness, the end of it on his deathbed on 1226
  10. The Latin text is that given by “The Electronic Grosseteste”, http://www.grosseteste.com, which is reporting the printed source: Ludwig Baur, Die Philosophischen Werke des Robert Grosseteste, Bischofs von Lincoln, 1912, Aschendorffsche Verlagsbuchhandlung, pages 72-78
  11. B. Boehrer and M. Schultze, Stratification of Lakes, Reviews of Geophysics, 2008, Volume 46, Issue 2, Pages 1-27
  12. M. Krizan, Elemental Structure and the Transformation of the Elements in On Generation and Corruption, in Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy, Volume 45, Brad Inwood Editor, Oxford University Press, 2013
  13. G. Liger-Belair, G. Polidori and P. Jeandet, Recent Advances in the Science of Champagne Bubbles, Chem. Soc. Rev., 2008, Volume 37, Pages 2490-2511
  14. F.J. Malina, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Is the sky the limits?, at www.olats.org, on 13 Dec 2013

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International Journal of Sciences is Open Access Journal.
This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) License.
Author(s) retain the copyrights of this article, though, publication rights are with Alkhaer Publications.

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