Barcelona-based independent publisher Kronecker Wallis is using Kickstarter to fund a new edition of Euclid’s Elements, an influential mathematical text written by Greek mathematician Euclid around 300 BCE said to be the “most successful and influential textbook ever written”.
The book has inspired the work of scientists such as Johannes Kelper, Galileo Galilei and Isaac Newton and was one of the earliest mathematical works to be printed after the invention of the printing press. The work comprises of 13 separate books covering subjects including geometry, the Pythagoras theory, prime numbers and other theories and propositions.
To create the new edition, Kroncecker Wallis is using Oliver Byrne’s 1847 rewritten editions as inspiration. The English mathematician took the first six books of Euclid’s Elements and interpreted its concepts through minimalist illustrations, transforming “the tedious geometric references to which we are accustomed, into visual concepts.”
Together with a team of mathematicians, professors and post-doctorates, the publisher hopes to honour and finish the work of Oliver Byrne in all 13 books. “In addition to the style used by Byrne, we will give the book our own minimalist touch; updating and building a text that is an experience to hold with your hands,” explains Kronecker Wallis.
With eight days to go, the team has already beat its €115,000 target with the current total at just over €119,000 at the time of writing. This is Kroncecker Wallis’ second Kickstarter book project, with the first successfully funding the printing of Isaac Newton’s Principia to celebrate the book’s 300th anniversary.