Lecons sur la Théorie mathematique de la Lutte pour la Vie. (Mathematical theory of the struggle for life)

Paris, Gauthier-Villars, 1931. Royal 8vo. Uncut in orig. printed wrappers. Uppe and lower part of backstrip gone. VI,214 pp. + Publisher's cat. (7) pp.

First edition of this pioneering book on mathematical treatment of the dynamics of animal populations. "The book mustbe considered as the most important contribution to the mathematization of biology made during the first half of the century, together with Lotka (1925). The origin of Volterra's direct intervention in the field of biomathematical research emerge clearly from his correspondance, manuscripts and direct testimony. In late 1925 D'Ancona showed him the results of a statistical survey of fish populations in the Upper Adriatic sea that pointed to a curious phenomenon. As a general rule, the percentage of predatory fish in the total fish catch in several ports in the Upper Adriatic remained constant, while it displayed an appreciable increase duringh the period 1915-18, that is, the years during which Italy was at war and the naval conflict in the Adriatic had led to an interruption of fishing activities. D'Ancona suggested that the lull in fishing activities was the cause of the increase in the number of predators, and he asked Volterra to provide a mathematical proof of this. Volterra threw himself into the question and came up with a description of the interaction between prey and predators beased on a simple mathematical model, which has since become famous and is known as the 'Lotka-Volterra equations'. (G. Israel in Landmarks Writings in Western Mathematics 1640-1940). -

Vito Volterra (1860-1940) may be considered one of the greatest Italian mathematicians living between the 19th and the 20th centuries who also enjoied great international prestige. (G. Israel).

Order-nr.: 39199

DKK 3.500,00