THE RARE BOOK AND
MANUSCRIPT LIBRARY
OF COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY

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6 Euclid
Elementa cum commentario Campani
Latin manuscript on vellum, 164 leaves, Flanders? ca. 1260 (Plimpton 156)
English philosopher and mathematician Aethelhard of Bath made the Latin translation, ca. 1120, of this manuscript of Euclid's Elements. It is not known whether Aethelhard, author of treatises on the abacus and the astrolabe, and of Perdifficiles quaestiones naturales, an attempt at systematization of Arabic scientific thought, prepared his translation of Euclid from a text in the original Greek or from an Arabic translation. Based on the evidence of an inscription following the colophon, it is believed that this codex was given by Johannes Campanus (fl. 1260) to Jacques Pantaleon while the latter was Patriarch of Jerusalem, hence before August 29, 1261, at which time Pantaleon became Pope Urban IV. Campanus, an Italian mathematician and chaplain to Urban IV, was the author of Tractatus de sphaera, De computo ecclesiastico, and various planetary tables, and also prepared the most popular of the late medieval and renaissance commentaries (proofs) for the Elements, which were subsequently used in most of the early printed editions.
Gift of George A. Plimpton

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