Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions is an satirical novella by Edwin Abbott I run this site alone and spend an awful lot of time creating these books. Charmingly illustrated by the author, Flatland is not only fascinating reading, it is still a first-rate fictional Book Details PDF (tablet), tvnovellas.info Its an excellent introduction and metaphor for theoretical physics of many dimensions, although it did raise a lot of questions for me. It is definitely a book that.
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If my poor Flatland friend retained the vigour of mind which he enjoyed when It is true that we have really in Flatland a Third unrecognized Dimension called. Free kindle book and epub digitized and proofread by Project Gutenberg. Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions (Illustrated) by Edwin Abbott Abbott. Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions by Edwin Abbott Abbott; 87 Subjects : Open Library Staff Picks, Large type books, Denkbeeldige.
Plot[ edit ] Illustration of a simple house in Flatland. The story describes a two-dimensional world occupied by geometric figures, whereof women are simple line-segments, while men are polygons with various numbers of sides. The narrator is a square , a member of the caste of gentlemen and professionals, who guides the readers through some of the implications of life in two dimensions. The first half of the story goes through the practicalities of existing in a two-dimensional universe as well as a history leading up to the year on the eve of the 3rd Millennium. On New Year's Eve, the Square dreams about a visit to a one-dimensional world Lineland inhabited by "lustrous points". These points are unable to see the Square as anything other than a set of points on a line.
You may perhaps ask how under these disadvantagous circumstances we are able to distinguish our friends from one another: but the answer to this very natural question will be more fitly and easily given when I come to describe the inhabitants of Flatland. For the present let me defer this subject, and say a word or two about the climate and houses in our country.
As with you, so also with us, there are four points of the compass North, South, East, and West.
There being no sun nor other heavenly bodies, it is impossible for us to determine the North in the usual way; but we have a method of our own. By a Law of Nature with us, there is a constant attraction to the South; and, although in temperate climates this is very slight—so that even a Woman in reasonable health can journey several furlongs northward without much difficulty—yet the hampering effort of the southward attraction is quite sufficient to serve as a compass in most parts of our earth.
Moreover, the rain which falls at stated intervals coming always from the North, is an additional assistance; and in the towns we have the guidance of the houses, which of course have their side-walls running for the most part North and South, so that the roofs may keep off the rain from the North.
In the country, where there are no houses, the trunks of the trees serve as some sort of guide.
Altogether, we have not so much difficulty as might be expected in determining our bearings. You may do whatever you like with this book, but mostly we hope you will read it.
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In such a country, you will perceive at once that it is impossible that there should be anything of what you call a "solid" kind; but I dare say you will suppose that we could at least distinguish by sight the Triangles, Squares, and other figures, moving about as I have described them. On the contrary, we could see nothing of the kind, not at least so as to distinguish one figure from another.
Nothing was visible, nor could be visible, to us, except Straight Lines; and the necessity of this I will speedily demonstrate.
Place a penny on the middle of one of your tables in Space; and leaning over it, look down upon it. It will appear a circle.
But now, drawing back to the edge of the table, gradually lower your eye thus bringing yourself more and more into the condition of the inhabitants of Flatland , and you will find the penny becoming more and more oval to your view, and at last when you have placed your eye exactly on the edge of the table so that you are, as it were, actually a Flatlander the penny will then have ceased to appear oval at all, and will have become, so far as you can see, a straight line.
The same thing would happen if you were to treat in the same way a Triangle, or a Square, or any other figure cut out from pasteboard. As soon as you look at it with your eye on the edge of the table, you will find that it ceases to appear to you as a figure, and that it becomes in appearance a straight line.
Take for example an equilateral Triangle—who represents with us a Tradesman of the respectable class.
Figure 1 represents the Tradesman as you would see him while you were bending over him from above; figures 2 and 3 represent the Tradesman, as you would see him if your eye were close to the level, or all but on the level of the table; and if your eye were quite on the level of the table and that is how we see him in Flatland you would see nothing but a straight line. When I was in Spaceland I heard that your sailors have very similar experiences while they traverse your seas and discern some distant island or coast lying on the horizon.
The far-off land may have bays, forelands, angles in and out to any number and extent; yet at a distance you see none of these unless indeed your sun shines bright upon them revealing the projections and retirements by means of light and shade , nothing but a grey unbroken line upon the water.
Well, that is just what we see when one of our triangular or other acquaintances comes towards us in Flatland.