Maria Angela Ardinghelli – Italian Scientist and Translator (1730–1825) | Saints, Sisters, and Sluts

Originally posted on Saints, Sisters, and Sluts.

Engraving of the activities of the Académie des Sciences c. 1698 (source)

During the time of Laura Bassi and Maria Agnesi, there was another learned woman of mathematics and science. Maria Angela Ardinghelli was well-known during her time, although she has been overlooked from a historical perspective, or known simply as a translator of works by Stephen Hales. In fact, she was the only woman whose letters were read at the meetings of the Paris Academy of Sciences on a regular basis. Bertucci describes her as a de facto foreign correspondent of the scientific activities in Italy. She sent them meteorological data, natural history information about Naples, and reports of unusual medical cases.

Ardinghelli’s family was one of the oldest and most distinguished in Italy, having moved from Florence to Naples when the Medici family came to power. But Nicola, her father, married against his parents’ wishes and was punished accordingly. He was denied his hereditary titles and was restricted to a very modest fortune. Nicola and his wife, Caterina Piccillo, had two children, but Maria Angela’s brother died young, so she was raised an only child. Her father provided her with the best available tutors for her education. She studied mathematics, natural philosophy, English, French…

via Maria Angela Ardinghelli – Italian Scientist and Translator (1730–1825) | Saints, Sisters, and Sluts.

2 thoughts on “Maria Angela Ardinghelli – Italian Scientist and Translator (1730–1825) | Saints, Sisters, and Sluts

  1. Yet another scholarly and distinguished woman from history that I had never heard of. It is good to know that these ladies from the past were far from all being courtesans, contented housewives, and gossips.
    best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

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