Archimedes' Secret (2002)

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Synopsis

Traces the story of the earliest manuscript copy of Archimedes' revolutionary mathematical theories, which was hidden for a millennium under the surface ink of a Byzantine prayer book in a monastic library in Constantinople, where it was discovered in 1906 by the scholar Johan Ludwig Heiberg. The manuscript went missing after the First World War, and for many years was thought to be lost, until, in 1991, an expert from Christies auction house found it in the hands of a French family. It was bought anonymously at auction for over $2 million, and is now on loan to the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore for conservation. Contributors include: Dr William Noel and Abigail Quandt (The Walters Art Museum); Dr Roger Easton (Rochester Institute of Technology); Prof Reviel Netz (Stanford University); Dr Chris Rorres (University of Pennsylvania); Prof Alexander Jones (University of Toronto); Dr Nigel Wilson (Oxford University); Felix de Marez Oyens (former director of the International Book Department, Christies); Dr John Lowden (Courtauld Institute of Art); Dr Keith Knox (Rochester Institute of Technology); and Natalie Tchernetska.

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