Marin Mersenne

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Marin Mersenne
BirthplaceOizé, Maine
Known for Acoustics

Mersenne, Marin


Born Sept. 8, 1588, in Oizé, Maine; died Sept. 1, 1648, in Paris. French physicist.

Mersenne was educated in a Jesuit school and subsequently entered the Order of St. Francis. He lived in the order’s monasteries, where he taught philosophy and theology. Mersenne studied various physical phenomena, and his most significant works dealt with musical acoustics. He was the first to determine the propagation velocity of sound in the atmosphere. He also proposed a scheme for a reflecting telescope. Mersenne conducted an extensive correspondence with prominent scientists of his day, including Galileo, R. Descartes, C. Huygens, B. Pascal, E. Torricelli, P. de Fermat, and P. Gassendi. This correspondence promoted the dissemination and discussion of scientific discoveries and the establishment of contacts between scientists.


Traité de l’harmonie universelle, oú est contenue la musique theorique et pratique des anciens et modernes. Paris, 1627.
Correspondance du P. Marin Mersenne Réligieux minime, vols. 1–11. Published by Mme Paul Tannery. Paris, 1932–70.
References in periodicals archive ?
Mersenne primes are named in honor of Marin Mersenne, a French friar who studied them almost four centuries ago.
Moreover, as Sjokvist shows, Vallerius brought the most up-to-date scientific and philosophical models to bear upon his work, building on the writings of such figures as Rene Descartes and Marin Mersenne.
Although there are an infinite amount of prime numbers, the hunt for the largest has in recent years centred on rare Mersenne primes, named after Marin Mersenne, a 17th-century French monk and mathematician.
Essays address music functioning within esoteric and scientific traditions and theories and works by authors like Marsilio Ficino, Tommaso Campanella, Athanasius Kircher, Johannes Kepler, Marin Mersenne, Abu Ma'shar, and Giovanni Battista della Porta, or the influence of those traditions on musical works, such as pieces by John Dowland, Ferruccio Busoni, Orlando di Lasso, Alexander Scriabin, and Anton Webern.
Euclid discussed them in 350 BC but they bear the name of the 17th century French monk, Marin Mersenne, who made a study of them.
La carta del 20 de noviembre de 1629 dirigida al famoso padre franciscano Marin Mersenne puede ser considerada como el documento en que Descartes consigna su opinion respecto al proyecto de un lenguaje universal.
En I'Harmonie Universelle (1636), obra del filosofo, teologo, teorico musical, amigo y consejero de Descartes, Marin Mersenne (1588-1684), podemos encontrar los principios psico-fisiologicos de la teoria cartesiana de la produccion de pasiones aplicados a la musica.
Scholars whose research concerns the philosophers Rene Descartes and Marin Mersenne, the poet and historian P.
It is against the lively discourse of the Renaissance thinkers that Palisca then summarizes the positions taken in the next century by Athanasius Kircher, Descartes, and Marin Mersenne.
He summarizes the theories and the trial and the prevailing French intellectual climate, then reports on early contacts and the responses by Marin Mersenne, Peiresc and Gassendi, and Descartes.
The new champion is a so-called Mersenne prime, named after the 17th-century monk Marin Mersenne who formulated a famous but incorrect conjecture about these numbers.
However, he held his own in arguments with Descartes conducted through the latter's friend Marin Mersenne, analysed curves now called Fermat's parabolas and hyperbolas, and theorised about prime numbers.

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