*Science and Its Times*. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.

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## Girard Desargues and Projective Geometry

## Overview

In 1639 Girard Desargues (1591-1661), a military engineer and architect, published the *Brouillon project d'une atteinte aux événements des rencontres d'un cône avec un plan *(Proposed Draft of an Attempt to Deal with the Events of the Meeting of a Cone with a Plane). In this work Desargues established the principles of projective geometry, an alternative to traditional Euclidean geometry. Projective geometry was concerned with projections, or the extent to which the shape of a figure is changed by the perspective from which that figure is viewed.

Desargues's projective geometry, however, was overshadowed by the work of his contemporary, René Descartes (1596-1650). These two, along with other important scientists and mathematicians of the time, helped to move math and science towards more practical applications. Also, the frequent collaboration between these figures led to the...

This section contains 1,500 words(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page) |