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Mathematical Treasure: Geometry of Francois Viete

Author(s): 
Frank J. Swetz (The Pennsylvania State University)

In his Supplementum Geometriae of 1593, François Viète (1540-1603) employed neusis constructions to tackle the three classical problems of antiquity: angle trisection, doubling the volume of a cube, and constructing a square with the same area as a circle.

Title page of Supplementum Geometriae by Francois Viete, 1593

The first page of text offers the author’s explanation of the work.

First page of Supplementum Geometriae by Francois Viete, 1593

Proposition XVI offers a construction for the solution of a cubic equation.

Proposition XVI from Supplementum Geometriae by Francois Viete, 1593

In Proposition XXIIII, Viète demonstrated the construction of a heptagon.

Proposition XXIIII from Supplementum Geometriae by Francois Viete, 1593

This material is obtained through the courtesy of the National Central Library of Rome. A complete copy of this work can be viewed in the Internet Archive.

Index to Mathematical Treasures

Frank J. Swetz (The Pennsylvania State University), "Mathematical Treasure: Geometry of Francois Viete," Convergence (June 2018)

Dummy View - NOT TO BE DELETED