Giovanni Francesco Crivelli

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Giovanni Francesco Crivelli (Venice, 20 Sep 1690 – 20 Sep 1743) was a Venetian priest.

Crivelli was a priest member of the Somasco holy order in the Cloister of the Health, then was provincial Father of the order and rector of the Seminar of Murano.


He published two teaching books, the Elements of Numeral and Literal Arithmetic (published in Venice in 1728), and the Elements of Physics (published in Venice in 1731 and subsequently broadened in 1744). His original manuscripts are lost.

The second book is particularly important for a number of reasons. It is a popular teaching book whose first volume contains the same arguments that are still in use today in the classes of a Scientific High School (with the exception of the electro-magnetic phenomena considered at that time as little more than a fairground booth phenomena). The book discusses astronomical matters. In the book is to not the full reception of the physics of Galileo and of Newton with Galileo called "the prince of the scientists",[clarification needed] a full recognition of the importance of the Arabic Muslim civilisation in the creation of the scientific method. The explanation of the scientific method coincides practically with the positions of the neopositivism and of the scientific realism. Also, the writing style is innovative and still present for the utilization of the Italian, for the large and precise descriptions of a lot of experiments also done outside Europe, and for the exhibition of the varied hypothesis of the scientists about arguments still object of discussion in those years. Also of note is the recognition of the existence and of the equal dignity of theoretical alongside experimental physics.

His activity was also highly valued outside of Italy. Crivelli was elected in January 1734 as a Fellow of the Royal Society (his books are in the library of the Royal Society). After his death, he was soon forgotten and his work was only recently re-discovered.