Simon Stevin's (1548-1620) work is part of the general scientific revival that resulted from the commercial and industrial prosperity of the cities of the Netherlands and northern Italy in the sixteenth century. This development was further spurred by the discovery of the principal works of antique science &dsh; especially those of Euclid, Apollonius, Diophantus, and Archimedes &dsh; which were brought to western Europe from Byzanthium, then in a state of decline, or from the Arabic centers of learning in Spain. Stevin wrote on a variety of topics. A number of his works are almost wholly original, while even those that represent surveys of science as it existed around 1600 contain his own interpretations; all are characterized by a remarkable lucid and methodological presentation. Stevin chose to write almost all of his books in the vernacular. In the introduction to his De Beghinselen der Weeghconst
of 1586, he stated his admiration for Dutch as a language of wonderful power in shaping new terms; and a number of words coined by stevin and his contemporaries survive in the rich Dutch scientific vocabulary.
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