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Writing in the 1720s, Bernard Le Bovier de Fontenelle (1657–1757), permanent secretary of the Académie Royale des Sciences from 1699, pointed to the development of infinitesimal calculus by Newton, Leibniz, Jacques Bernoulli (1654–1705), Pierre Varignon (1654–1722) and others and called it ‘an epoch of almost total revolution occurring in geometry’ [32: 212; 21: Ch. 9]. In the 1750s the two editors of the Encyclopédie, Denis Diderot (1713–84) and Jean Le Rond d’Alembert (1717–83), talked of the revolution in science which had been initiated in the previous century and which they saw as continuing [32: 217–20; 103: 1–2].
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