Person: Jungius, Joachim
Joachim Jungius was a German mathematician who was one of the first to use exponents to represent powers and who used mathematics as a model for the natural sciences.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- On leaving Rostock, Jungius matriculated at the University of Giessen in May 1608 and he was awarded an M.A. on 22 December 1608.
- In 1612, along with his Gissen colleague Christoph Helvig, Jungius went to Frankfurt for the coronation of Matthias, King of Hungary and King of Bohemia, as the Holy Roman Emperor.
- Jungius was very interested in Ratke's ideas and together they discussed starting schools in Augsburg and Erfurt which would teach according to Ratke's system.
- In 1614 Jungius resigned his position at Giessen with the idea that he would devote himself to educational reform, but he soon decided that he wanted to increase his knowledge of medicine.
- Thereafter Jungius practised medicine at Lübeck from 1619 to 1623, he held the chair of mathematics at the University of Rostock from 1624 to 1625, practised medicine at Brunswick and Wolfenbüttel in 1625 and then from 1626 to 1628 he again held the chair of mathematics at the University of Rostock.
- When giving his inaugural address on taking up the chair at Rostock, Jungius gave a similar address to the one he had given at Giessen, stressing his belief that mathematics was the basis for all scientific subjects.
- The reason that Jungius stopped working on the reconstruction in 1629 was that in that year he moved to Hamburg where he became professor of natural science at the Akademisches Gymnasium.
- Many professors begin their careers teaching in secondary schools, but few make the move which Jungius did and leave university education to teach in schools.
- Under Jungius's leadership the school prospered and many pupils outwith Hamburg or the surrounding area, moved there to benefit from the education.
- While at the Academic Gymnasium in Hamburg, where he taught until 1640, Jungius delivered "physics" lectures which were published by Christopher Meinel in the 1980s.
- The Logica Hamburgensis Ⓣ(Hamburg logic) (1638) of Jungius, composed for the use of pupils at the Akademisches Gymnasium, presented late medieval theories and techniques of logic.
- While Leibniz administered a princely library, Jungius assembled an extensive private book and manuscript collection over a long and intellectually ecumenical career.
- At different times in his career, Jungius's scholarly "centre of gravity" ...
- In mathematics Jungius proved that the catenary is not a parabola (Galileo assumed it was).
- As well as mathematics, Jungius was interested in natural science.
- From it we learn that Jungius was confident of predicting and explaining natural phenomena by adopting the natural laws that he distinguished.
- In brief, Jungius transformed the relevant parts of the Peripatetic notion of physics into what was to become physical chemistry by the analysis of unique experiences and experiments and the mathematical method of synthesis.
- In particular, Jungius is known for his atomic theories.
- Jungius's attempt to rebuild the system of physical knowledge belongs to the widespread quest for making both philosophy and natural science as axiomatically structured as geometry.
- In contrast to most of his contemporaries, Jungius insisted that only the evidence of sensuous experience and an inductive methodology would lead to the identification of these ultimate units of reality.
- Jungius used the magnifying glass to study textile fabric and apparently homogeneous substances such as polished surfaces.
- In 1633, commenting on Sennert's 'Epitome scientiae naturalis' of 1618, in which Sennert had shown that arguments from geometry about divisibility and continuity must not be applied to the physical sciences, Jungius remarked that until then no physical body had ever been proved to be entirely homogeneous.
- Consequently, Jungius categorically stated that continuity was foreign to the realm of sensuous experience.
- Jungius begins with a common criticism of the chemical system, the impossibility of obtaining from metals any alleged elementary salt.
- Thus the fact that metals can exist in the form of salts and liquids does not, according to Jungius, prove that salts and liquids exist as ingredients of metals.
- Finally let us quote the opinion of one of Jungius's contemporaries.
Born 22 October 1587, Lübeck, Holstein (now Germany). Died 23 September 1657, Hamburg, Germany.
View full biography at MacTutor
Tags relevant for this person:
Astronomy, Origin Germany
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive