1.2.11

Inventors - Montmartre Cemetery

Another cat and some more tombs at the Montmartre Cemetery.

André-Marie Ampère (1775-1836), physicist and mathematician, specialised in electromagnetism and has given his name to the measurement unit of electric current. Ampere is one of the seven of the International System of Units:

- metre for length (Yes, metre, not feet…!!)

- kilogram for mass (Yes, kilogram, not pounds…!!)

- second for time

- ampere for electric current

- kelvin for temperature (This is the scientific measurement going from the “absolute zero”, commonly used in conjunction with °C – centigrades – having the same magnitude. Absolute zero at Kelvin is = minus 273,15 °C.) (Fahrenheit is still in use in the US… and Belize, Myanmar and Liberia!! It seems that 100 °F was what Fahrenheit noted when he put the thermometer in the mouth of his wife and the 0 °F should correspond to the coldest night he had experienced in Danzig where he lived. He translated this by measuring the temperature of a special mix of ice, water and some salt.)

- candela for luminous intensity (Basically, a normal candle emits light of one candela…)

- mole for amount of substance (Refers to molecule…)

Ampère also invented the ammeter (to measure the amperes), the first electric telegraph (together with Arago), the electromagnet…. He was a professor at the Paris polytechnic school.

André-Marie is buried with family members, including his son Jean-Jacques Ampère (1800-64), who was an eminent philogist (languages and their origins). He studied folk-songs and popular poetry especially in Scandinavia and Germany and obviously his works impressed and influenced Goethe. He taught at Sorbonne and became a member of the French Academy.
Léon Foucault (1819-68) was a physicist, who undertook measurements of the speed of light (0,6% from today’s value), discovered something called “eddy currents”, named the gyroscope, improved Daguerre’s photographic processes, worked on improving telescopes …, but he’s most known for the “Foucault pendulum”, a visual proof of the earth rotation. I already referred to pendulums to be seen in previous posts - about the Pantheon, where the first public experiment with a 67m (220ft) long wire and a 28kg (62lbs) bob was performed in 1851 - and about the “Arts-et-métiers” (Arts and Crafts) museum where another “original” version of the pendulum can (could?) be seen. (It seems that the cable broke last year… I haven’t been back since.)
Umberto Eco’s “Foucault’s Pendulum” is a fascinating book although the pendulum has only a symbolic significance in the novel. The book opens with the narrator hiding and spending the night in the “Arts-et Métiers” museum.
This little video should help you to explain how it works.




The third and last inventor (at least for today) is Adolphe Sax (1814-94). Born in a family of musical instrument manufacturers and an excellent flutist, he improved a lot of existing instruments and invented many others; bass clarinet, saxhorns, saxotrombas… and the saxophone. Of course, the saxophone, in its different versions, is mostly related to jazz music with performers like Charlie Parker, Coltrane, Rollins, Mulligan, Getz, Bechet, Garret… (and Bill Clinton), but already from the beginning, some “classical” composers like Berlioz (also buried at the Montmartre cemetery, see previous post) and later Debussy, Ravel, Hindemith, Prokofiev, Honegger... have written for the instrument.


This may help you to find the tombs if you are interested.
 

31 comments:

Milla said...

Excelent post!!!
Milla (milla-delapraca.blogspot.com)

Les rêves d'une boulangère (Brittany) said...

That cat is adorable! I want to visit Monmarte cemetery next time I visit Paris. I suggested it last time, but my family thought it was a strange idea.

Olivier said...

encore de belles decouvertes dans ce cimetiere.

Thérèse said...

I had no idea for Jean-Jacques Ampere!
Les chats ont-ils aussi chacun leur specialite?

Hanny said...

I'll bet that cat could tell some stories!

Owen said...

Hey Peter,
Another fine piece of research you've done... really fascinating. I do like a lot of what I've read by Eco... The Island of the Day Before is good too...

That cat looks positively evil !
:-)

Should still be good for next Monday... will give you a call...

V Rakesh said...

Whooaaa! Thats a very eerie looking cat!

ALAIN said...

Tu n'as pas trouvé les tombes de Metre, Kilogramme et Seconde ?

Cergie said...

Ouf ! J'ai cru un instant qu'Umberto Eco était mort et enterré !
Te voilà devenu un blog scientifique et animalier. Les chats sont plein de poils en hiver tu as remarqué ?

Richard said...

Scientists - they all gravitated towards Paris. Probably another law of nature yet to be discovered. Artists, philosophers, musicians as well. I would too mind you, although I'm none of the above. Just a footnote - Adolphe Sax is of course one to add to the list of famous Belgians....

hpy said...

Je me trouvais à l'angle de la rue Ampère (peu importe la ville) il n'y a pas longtemps, et juste à coté il y avait le lycée André Ampère. Personne n'a parlé de Marie.

Il est plutôt horrible, ton chat.

ParisBreakfasts said...

Your cats are...SO FRNECH!
and very firece too
Carolg

SCATTI said...

Ancora notizie molto interessanti e utili per coloro che vogliono visitare Parigi fuori dagli stereotipi.
Grazie di nuovo.
Mauro

Cezar and Léia said...

Bonjour dear Peter!
The best picture is "the cute kitty"!
That cat is posing for your camera!I be he is enjoying the moment! Cute!
The video is about the pendulum is very interesting,I'm linking the post to my son Guilherme.
And I loved the SAX show here, thanks for the musical video.
He was an excellent musician!
hugs
Léia

Mo said...

Wouldn't like to cross that cat. Peter you should really put your posts into a book. Your research is so professional and your market is those who want to know more than the tourist but not go and study. Really you should.

caterpillar said...

Gosh you know so much....and I can imagine the effort you put into these posts....hats off to you...

claude said...

Que de personnages célèbres dans ce cimetière. Merci pour nous rafraichir la mémoire sur les inventions des inventeurs.
As tu une idée du pourquoi de la présence de tous ces chats dans les cimetières.

Kesha Tickets said...

Amazing .. I will bookmark your blog and take the feeds also... Big thanks for the useful info i found on Comentari de categoria nova.

Ruth said...

You have given us some beautiful information today, Peter. Two Ampères! I love that candela measurement. Ahh. I just love the Foucault pendulum at the Pantheon. And then you give us Sax and Charlie Parker! I never ever knew that there was a person named Sax! Crazy . . .

I wonder if anyone has created a book of personalities of famous people buried in Montmartre Cemetery, or at Pere Lachaise? With short biographies like yours? You should consider it!

parisbreakfast said...

Les cimetaires seem to be your specialites!
There is a book here!!

Peter (the other) said...

Wow, give ol' Fahrenheit the ridicule it deserves. The US also shares some of its music copyright laws with just as odd a set of national bedfellows.

I'm with the group who loves the cat and worry when people find them "evil". Here in the USA some too large proportion of the population thinks it is their rightful duty (perhaps a distortion of R. Kipling's theory in the Just So Stories) to cause pain and death to the poor creatures.

Watching Bird, Rich et al "lip-syncing" is wild!

Ash said...

Very nice post Peter. Love that cat!

JM said...

Creepy cat! :-) Never visited this cemetery, great post, Peter.

Bettina said...

As usual I just LOVE the cat.
And I think you're doing a huge job with your posts, thank you for sharing ;o)

arabesque said...

now what is it about cats and tombs?!
suddenly it seems eerie! ^0^
tnx for sharing infos about Montmartre.
I think now, i do know more about Paris' cemetery than in my own country.

Starman said...

Interesting that the two examples of Foucault's experiment show different, though similar, results.

Virginia said...

LOVED the Charlie Parker clip and of course your photos.I'm thinking though that Passy might be my new favorite resting place! We had some great shots there you know!
v

Andro said...

Hi friends, I visited this cemetery last year around August with my girlfriend and among all the beautiful things we saw there were these strangely beautiful blue and grey birds (about the size of a crow) flying from tree to tree, I just never got to know what kind of birds they were. My girlfriend and I were amazed (no, we weren´t high LoL).Has anybody seen these birds? What are they? Thanks! and awesome page!!!

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