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The Princeton Companion to Mathematics by Imre Leader, June Barrow-Green, Timothy Gowers

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VI.20 Jean Le Rond d’Alembert

b. Paris, 1717; d. Paris, 1783

Algebra; infinitesimal calculus; rational mechanics; fluid mechanics; celestial mechanics; epistemology

D’Alembert spent his whole life in Paris, where he became one of the most influential members of the Académie Royale des Sciences and of the Académie Française. He became well-known as the scientific editor of the celebrated French Encyclopédie, the twentyeight-volume work on which he collaborated with Denis Diderot, and for which he wrote most of the mathematical and many of the scientific articles.

As a student at the Jansenist Collège des Quatre-Nations, he followed the usual curriculum of grammar, rhetoric, and philosophy, the latter including some Cartesian science, a little ...

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