Submitted by: Rivka Feldhay
English translation by Matteo Valleriani, Lindy Divarci and Anna Siebold
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Publication Date: April 18, 2013
This publication is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-Share Alike 3.0 Germany (cc by-nc-sa 3.0) Licence.
In 1537, Nicolò Tartaglia (1500–1557), a mathematician from Brescia, published "Nova scientia." It was this work that led to the foundation of the modern science of ballistics. Tartaglia’s intention was to create a purely mathematical science based on axioms, which was fundamental to the entire subject of mechanics, starting with a limited number of principles and arriving at a series of propositions through a rigid procedure of deduction.
Nevertheless, as Tartaglia himself states, his motive was fundamentally practical and connected to the activities of the sixteenth-century bombardier. A new edition of Nicolò Tartaglia’s "Nova scientia," based on the 1558 print run of the second enlarged edition (1550), shows how the emergence of theoretical ballistics was a consequence of the technological innovations that took place in the frame of the practice of iron casting at the turn from the fifteenth to the sixteenth century.