**Archimedes** was a **Greek born in Syracuse** in 287 B.C. It was a great scientist with brilliant contributions to different fields of **physics, astronomy, and maths**. He discovered the concept of **density** and the principle of **buoyancy**, which tell us why some objects float and why other objects sink. He discovered the laws of the **lever and pulleys**.

He was also a great inventor. He invented the so-called **Archimedean screw**, some machines to be used in astronomy observations and calculations, and many **war machines** that allowed to defend his city against the Romans.

**But above all, Archimedes was a giant mathematician**. He estimated the value of the number π=3.14... starting with the perimeters of inscribed and circumscribed regular polygons. He also made important discoveries about volumes and surfaces of the sphere and the cylinder.

He was a clear example of **absent-minded mathematician**. One time, **Archimedes was working on a problem he had drawn in the sand of the floor**. His city, Syracuse, was in war against Romans and it had been taken just when we was thinking about the problem. Then a Roman soldier appeared and shouted him:

*- I order you to come with me to see the General.*

But Archimedes answered impatiently:

*- Can't you see I am working? I must finish my problem firstly. And stand off my diagram, you are spoiling it.*

**The soldier got angry, drew his sword and killed Archimedes.**

References:

- Jeanne Bendick, *Archimedes and the door of science.* Bethelhem books (1995).

- William Dunham, Journey through genius: the great theorems of mathematics, Penguin books (1991).

- http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/~history/Biographies/Archimedes.html

- http://www.math.nyu.edu/~crorres/Archimedes/Death/DeathIllus.html

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