Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Announcing the formation of the Hypatia Academy of Ancient Science

Please answer the following questions to be considered for admission to the Hypatia Academy:

1. Briefly (or, if you prefer, not so briefly) explain why only a moron would suppose that ancient Pagans believed the earth to be flat.

2. In which of his works did Ptolemy give the most detailed presentation of his ideas about the use of experiments in the advancement of scientific knowledge?

3. The calculations of which ancient scientist were used by Christopher Columbus as the basis for his voyages?

4. Which two ancient poets were cited by Erasmus Darwin (Charles' grandfather) as the inspiration for his theory of biological evolution?

5. What was the profession of Galileo's father and why is this significant?

For those who would like to be considered for faculty appointments, please also answer the following five additional questions:

6. Write a detailed critique of the how the film "Agora" portrays ancient science.

7. What are your thoughts on the prayer to Venus at the beginning of Lucretius' "De Rerum Natura", and how this prayer relates to the rest of the poem?

8. Explain using specific citations to the works of Cicero how Platonic scepticism can be reconciled with Stoic cosmological and theological ideas.

9. In which ancient work are the earth's northern and southern polar ice caps described as they would appear to someone viewing the earth from outer space?

10. Write about the contributions of Francesco Patrizi to modern science with special attention to the influence of ancient Pagan philosophy on Patrizi.

Send your completed answers to cornelius "dot" anatole "at" gmail.com. Or simply submit your answers as a comment to this blog post.