Person: Faille, Jean Charles de La
Jan-Karel della Faille or Jean Charles de La Faille was a Flemish Jesuit who was the first to determine the centre of gravity of the sector of a circle.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- De la Faille became a disciple of Saint-Vincent, whom he met in Antwerp where he was also influenced by François d'Aguilon.
- De la Faille taught at the Jesuit College of Louvain from 1626 until 1628 when, after a short stay in Lier, he left for Spain on 23 March 1629 where he was appointed as a professor at the Imperial College in Madrid.
- De la Faille advised Philip IV on questions of defence and of military engineering during this period.
- La Faille also taught mathematics and military engineering in Madrid.
- In 1638 Philip IV named della Faille Chief Cosmographer of the Council of the Indies ...
- De la Faille helped Philip IV by serving as adviser on fortifications to the Duke of Alba along the Spanish-Portuguese border from 1641 until 1644.
- Della Faille soon became the prince's trusted advisor, and accompanied him on his military campaigns.
- The education that Juan José de Austria received from della Faille must have exerted a decisive influence on his interest in modern science, for he subsequently became Maecenas to Spanish scientists, employing as his personal physician such significant figures in Spanish scientific renewal as Juan Bautista Juanini.
- De la Faille made military expeditions to Naples, Sicily and Catalonia with Juan José de Austria who was given his first military command in 1647 when sent to Naples to attempt to crush an uprising.
- In 1651 de la Faille accompanied him when he led the Spanish army against the rebellion in Catalonia.
- The army besieged Barcelona, the capital of the province, and in October 1652 the city surrendered and de la Faille entered the captured city along with the army.
- De la Faille wrote Theses mechanicae in 1625.
- La Faille ended his work with four corollaries which revealed his ultimate goal: an examination of the quadrature of the circle.
- One of de la Faille's close personal and scientific friends was van Langren.
- In this famous portrait, de la Faille is in religious habit and is represented with his mathematical instruments such as a compass, a square and a globe.
Born 1 March 1597, Antwerp, Dutch Republic (now Belgium). Died 4 November 1652, Barcelona, Spain.
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Tags relevant for this person:
Architecture, Astronomy, Origin Belgium
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive