1902 Encyclopedia > Edme Mariotte

Edme Mariotte
French physicist, physiologist and priest
(c. 1620-1684)




EDME MARIOTTE (died 1684), a celebrated French physicist, was a native of Burgundy. He lived chiefly near Dijon as prior of St Martin sous Beaune, and was one of the first members of the Academy of Sciences, which was founded at Paris in 1666. He died at Paris May 12, 1684.

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The title page of the first volume of the collected works of Edme Mariotte


The first volume of the Histoire et Mémoires de l'Académie (1733) contains many original papers by him upon a great variety of physical subjects, such as the motion of fluids, the nature of colour, the notes of the trumpet, the barometer, the fall of bodies, the recoil of guns, the freezing of water, &c. His Essais de Physique, four in number, of which the first three were published at Paris between 1676 and 1679, are his most important works, and form, together with an elaborate treatise on the percussion of bodies, the first volume of the Œuvres de Mariotte (2 vols., Leyden, 1717). The second of these essays ("De la Nature de l'Air ") contains the statement of the law connecting the pressure and volume of a gas which, though very generally called by the name of Mariotte, was discovered seven years before by Boyle. The fourth essay is a systematic treatment of the nature of colour, with a description of many curious experiments and a discussion of the rainbow, halos, parhelia, diffraction, and the more purely physiological phenomena of colour. The discovery of the blind spot is noted in a short paper in the second volume of his collected works. [--]







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