You are here

Mathematical Treasures - Condorcet's Books on Probability

Frank J. Swetz (The Pennsylvania State University)

Essai sur L’Application de L’Analyse a la Probabilité (1785) was a pioneering work in the application of probability theory to the understanding of social issues. Its author was a French philosopher, mathematician and political scientist, Marie Jean Nicolas de Carcilat Condorcet (1743–1794). A marquis, he was more commonly referred to simply as Nicolas de Condorcet. De Condorcet published several noteworthy works on integral calculus but is best remembered for popularizing the use of probability.

De Condorcet’s Élémens du Calcul des Probablities, another book on the applications of probability, was published in 1805.

These images from its George Arthur Plimpton Collection are presented through the courtesy of the Columbia University Libraries.

Index to Mathematical Treasures

Frank J. Swetz (The Pennsylvania State University), "Mathematical Treasures - Condorcet's Books on Probability," Convergence (January 2020)


Mathematical Treasures from the Smith and Plimpton Collections at Columbia University