Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Line of the Archer, the Biologist & the Polymath

At Catalogue of Organisms biology blog, [ ] I made a comment regarding the original measure of the word "line", following his description : "A 'line' is a unit of measurement used by a number of 18th and 19th century biologists. The exact length of a line seems to have varied somewhat between countries (see this page for explanations), though it seems to have generally been a little more than 2 mm. Linnaeus apparently defined a line in the introduction to Philosophia Botanica as the length of a lunule (the white half-moon at the base of a fingernail) on any finger other than the thumb." (italics mine)

my comment: perhaps originally 'line' represented the diameter or thickness of a taut bowstring on an archer's bow? I'd think it fits in this way:

L-ine singlet, a-lign (ligament/tendon) (parallel fiber, straight or single coil)

Tw-ine duplet, div-ide, twisted lines -> X (double helix)

Tr-ine triplet, tri-plait, braided lines -> * (offset & interwoven)

See the picture in my earlier post here:

Note that in the 123 sequence, Roman numerals are vertical lines, Chinese numerals are horizontal lines and Indi-Arabic numerals are vertical cursively attached lines.

Per Bucky Fuller, there are no mathematically straight lines in nature, there are only progressively less non-straight lines as vector edges between and enclosing events.