*World of Mathematics*. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.

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*World of Mathematics* on Blaise Pascal

Although Blaise Pascal can be seen in retrospect as an important scientist in his time, he was a controversial figure to his contemporaries. There is no doubt that Pascal was of a superior intelligence, but he was a modest man, embarrassed by his own genius. The reason for his contemporaries' doubt was perhaps in part due to the fact that much of his work was not published in his lifetime, which limited how his accomplishments could be viewed. Still, Pascal gave the world, mathematical and otherwise, many things: he opened up new forms of **calculus**, projective **geometry**, **probability theory**, and he designed and manufactured the first calculating machinerun by cogs and wheels.

Pascal was born in Clermont (now known as Clermont-Ferrand), Auvergne, France, on June 19, 1623. He was the son of a mathematician and civil servant Ètienne and Antoinette (nee Bégon) Pascal. His mother died when...

This section contains 1,438 words(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page) |