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Mathematical Treasure: Mathematics Muses Engraved by Alexandre Vallée

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

Alexandre Vallée (1558–after 1618) was a French engraver who based these prints of the Muses for arithmetic, geometry, and astronomy on drawings by the Flemish painter Maerten de Vos (1532–1603). The engravings are are held by the Wellcome Library as no. 25902i, no. 25905i, and no. 25903i. They are made available via a Creative Commons License (CC BY 4.0).

While the Muse of arithmetic engages in bookkeeping, note the laborers reaping crops through the window.

Muse of arithmetic, engraved by Alexandre Vallée around 1600.

The Muse of geometry measures a globe with dividers. A compass and square lie on the ground.

Muse of geometry, engraved by Alexandre Vallée around 1600.

The constellations appear on the globe utilized by the Muse of astronomy.

The Muse of astronomy, engraved by Alexandre Vallée around 1600.

Index to Mathematical Treasures

Frank J. Swetz (The Pennsylvania State University), "Mathematical Treasure: Mathematics Muses Engraved by Alexandre Vallée," Convergence (October 2020)

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