celebrate . . . .
In 212. B. C., a Roman army laid siege to
Syracuse, a Greek colony in Sicily. The Roman commander Marcellus
ordered his soldiers not to harm Archimedes. Plutarch writes . .
"Archimedes ... was ..., as fate
would have it, intent upon
working out some problem by a diagram, and having fixed his mind alike
and his eyes upon the subject of his speculation, he never noticed the
incursion of the Romans, nor that the city was taken. In this transport
of study and contemplation, a soldier, unexpectedly coming up to him,
commanded him to follow to Marcellus; which he declining to do before
he had worked out his problem to a demonstration, the soldier, enraged,
drew his sword and ran him through."
The tomb of
Archimedes near Syracuse in Sicily, Italy.
in 75 BC. He
writes about his search for Archimedes' tomb.
"... and found (the tomb) enclosed all
around and covered with brambles and
thickets; for I remembered certain doggerel lines inscribed, as I had
heard, upon his tomb, which stated that a sphere along with a cylinder
had been put on top of his grave. Accordingly, after taking a good look
all around ..., I noticed a small column arising a little above
the bushes, on which there was a figure of a sphere and a cylinder... .
Slaves were sent in with sickles ... and when a passage to the place
was opened we approached the pedestal in front of us; the epigram was
traceable with about half of the lines legible, as the latter portion
was worn away."