Learn More

Samuel Taylor Coleridge

(1772-1834 / Devon / England)

A Mathematical Problem


This is now--this was erst,
Proposition the first--and Problem the first.

I.
On a given finite Line
Which must no way incline;
To describe an equi--
--lateral Tri--
--A, N, G, L, E.
Now let A. B.
Be the given line
Which must no way incline;
The great Mathematician
Makes this Requisition,
That we describe an Equi--
--lateral Tri--
--angle on it:
Aid us, Reason--aid us, Wit!

II.
From the centre A. at the distance A. B.
Describe the circle B. C. D.
At the distance B. A. from B. the centre
The round A. C. E. to describe boldly venture.
(Third Postulate see.)
And from the point C.
In which the circles make a pother
Cutting and slashing one another,
Bid the straight lines a journeying go,
C. A., C. B. those lines will show.
To the points, which by A. B. are reckon'd,
And postulate the second
For Authority ye know.
A. B. C.
Triumphant shall be
An Equilateral Triangle,
Not Peter Pindar carp, not Zoilus can wrangle.

III.
Because the point A. is the centre
Of the circular B. C. D.
And because the point B. is the centre
Of the circular A. C. E.
A. C. to A. B. and B. C. to B. A.
Harmoniously equal for ever must stay;
Then C. A. and B. C.
Both extend the kind hand
To the basis, A. B.
Unambitiously join'd in Equality's Band.
But to the same powers, when two powers are equal,
My mind forbodes the sequel;
My mind does some celestial impulse teach,
And equalises each to each.
Thus C. A. with B. C. strikes the same sure alliance,
That C. A. and B. C. had with A. B. before;
And in mutual affiance,
None attempting to soar
Above another,
The unanimous three
C. A. and B. C. and A. B.
All are equal, each to his brother,
Preserving the balance of power so true:
Ah! the like would the proud Autocratorix do!
At taxes impending not Britain would tremble,
Nor Prussia struggle her fear to dissemble;
Nor the Mah'met-sprung Wight,
The great Mussulman
Would stain his Divan
With Urine the soft-flowing daughter of Fright.

IV.
But rein your stallion in, too daring Nine!
Should Empires bloat the scientific line?
Or with dishevell'd hair all madly do ye run
For transport that your task is done?
For done it is--the cause is tried!
And Proposition, gentle Maid,
Who soothly ask'd stern Demonstration's aid,
Has prov'd her right, and A. B. C.
Of Angles three
Is shown to be of equal side;
And now our weary steed to rest in fine,
'Tis rais'd upon A. B. the straight, the given line.

Submitted: Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Do you like this poem?
1 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (A Mathematical Problem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge )

Enter the verification code :

Read all 1 comments »

Trending Poets

Trending Poems

  1. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  2. A Child's Christmas in Wales, Dylan Thomas
  3. Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
  4. I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  5. Daffodils, William Wordsworth
  6. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  7. Christmas Trees, Robert Frost
  8. January’s Sad Refrain, Teresa Dearing
  9. Fire and Ice, Robert Frost
  10. No Man Is An Island, John Donne

Poem of the Day

poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I heard the bells on Christmas day
Their old familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet the words repeat
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

...... Read complete »

   

New Poems

  1. Spring in the Holy Land, Nero CaroZiv
  2. A Man Of Different Charectarestics, Musa Ndhlovu
  3. Ever Hike in Hope, Pintu Mahakul
  4. The Past, Eugene Latumbo
  5. Lovely Hand, Pintu Mahakul
  6. There you are, Cee Bea
  7. Memories:, Gaurav Pandey
  8. Loneliness, Col Muhamad Khalid Khan
  9. Christmas Tree, Zoila T. Flores
  10. I Did Not Ask Him, But Said He, I Am A M.., Bijay Kant Dubey
[Hata Bildir]