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Eponyms, false

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157583.  Mon Mar 19, 2007 9:54 am Reply with quote

A very interesting article here about misnamed eponyms.

Bunsen didn’t invent the Bunsen burner - his assistant did.

Petri did invent the Petri dish - but only because he was assistant to the bloke who did the ground work.

Boyle never expressed Boyle’s Law, nor did he consider it to be a law.

In France, Boyle’s Law is Mariotte's Law.

And this interesting explanation of why inventions and discoveries carry someone's name anyway:

The tradition of professional credit was developed in the late 1600s in part to encourage those who made discoveries to share their work and allow others to build on them. Previously, the pursuit of knowledge had often been considered private (or privileged), or the knowledge gained was worth keeping secret. Hence, to encourage investigators to make their findings public, the Royal Society of London adopted a policy of bestowing honor only on the first to publish a particular discovery, much in the spirit of copyright law. Science became public. With it, however, came the competition for priority and exclusive credit

157586.  Mon Mar 19, 2007 9:59 am Reply with quote

Gresham's law was first formulated by Copernicus. It came up in one of the chatroom quizzes I organised on the outside.


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