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By Jean-Claude Martzloff

This publication is made of elements, the 1st dedicated to common, ancient and cultural history, and the second one to the improvement of every subdiscipline that jointly contain chinese language arithmetic. The booklet is uniquely available, either as a topical reference paintings, and likewise as an outline that may be learn and reread at many degrees of class by means of either sinologists and mathematicians alike.

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Euclid's geometry is completely transfigured in Mei Wending's three-dimensional figures, which take no account of perspective, and in his immersion in numerical computation. 57 At the same time, Mei Wending rehabilitated ancient Chinese techniques such as the fangcheng method for solving linear systems. A major part of his work was incorporated in the Shuli j ~ n ~ ~ u n . Schal1 in 1664, disputes between the Belgian F. Verbiest and Yang Guangxian), the missionaries finally succeeded in installing themselves on a long-term basis in the capital.

897 73Notice on the Shuli jinyyun, j. 107, p. 908. 74See Ricci's Qiankun tigi. 75According to the theory of the "Canopy of Heaven" (gaitian) described by the Zhoubi suanjing, the universe is finite. On the other hand, according to the theory of "the announcement of the night" (translation of xuanye by Ho Peng-Yoke ( l ) , 1966, p. ' difficult t o accept and apparently futile. " (qie lifenzhongmoxian dun you qiuzuo81 zhi ,fa er rno ihi sue But the criticism of geometry was not limited to the question of the strange ordering of the theorems.

Although he had never worked in the Manchu administration, he succeeded in focusing great interest on the subject of his study, alternately teaching mathematics and entering into contact directly (often at the expense of long journeys across China) or by letter with very many personalities. He was involved in the official publication of the Mzngshi (Ming History) monograph on calendrical astronomy. He also interested his large family in his research. 56 Compared with the European developments of the same period, the mathematical work of Mei Wending appears elementary.

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