Niccolo Tartaglia, Italian mathematician and mechanician, c 1550-1560.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Plate taken from 'Momenta Pulveris Pyrll'. Among the finest achievements of Tartaglia (1501-1557) is his 1556 publication 'Trattato Generale', considered the best mathematical compilation of its time. It covered arithmetic, mensuration, geometry and algebra, and was a valuable synthesis of the practical and commercial mathematics of his century. Tartaglia published the first translation of Euclid into Italian and the first Latin edition of the work of Greek mathematician Archimedes (c 287-212 BC).