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    Re: Point Venus, August 1773
    From: Fred Hebard
    Date: 2007 May 3, 07:13 -0400

    Alex,
    
    Yes, the book is about Delambre and Mechain.  Mechain is the one who
    died.  The discrepancy also led to the meter not being quite the
    right length.  I believe it was Mechain's results in Barcelona where
    he tried to hide the error.
    
    Fred
    
    On May 2, 2007, at 11:49 PM, Alexandre E Eremenko wrote:
    
    >
    >
    > Fred
    >
    >> The book, "The Measure of All Things," by
    >> Ken Alder,
    >
    > We don't have it at Purdue. What is it about?
    > The French expeditions measuring the length of
    > the meridian?
    >
    > I read another book about measuring the Paris meridian
    > by Delambre and Mechain to establish a "scientific standard
    > of the meter". Mechain
    > indeed once had
    > unexplained error of the order of 2" or so,
    > and he could not repeat the measurement after the
    > error was discovered (because of a war).
    > He tried to hide the error, and
    > this essentially ruined his life and
    > career...
    >
    >> The discrepancies had led, essentially, to the death of
    >> one of the fellows performing the measurements.
    >
    > Who was that?
    >
    > Alex.
    >
    >
    > >
    
    
    
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