Letter from Charles S. Peirce to Carlile P. Patterson
(New York, 04.04.1877)

Spanish translation & annotations


New York, 1877 April 4

Dear Sir,

Will you please forward the enclosed resumé of my Geneva results to Professor Plantamour. He finds for the seconds' pendulum at Geneva 0.993378m. This is not corrected for the flexure of the stand. As well as I can estimate, his stand is 5 times the stiffness of ours, and his pendulum must weigh about 10 kilograms. According to this, the correction of his value would +0.000119 m which would give for

Plantamour 0.993497 ‡ 2 m

Peirce 0.993493 ‡ 3



This only shows that we have no reason to suspect any want of accordance, which is not owing to known causes, between our results.

He has a smaller probable accidental error, because he began in November 1864 and continued the experiments at intervals till August 1871. My constant error, I will venture to say, is much smaller, not exceeding 1/100.000 part at most; while his must be ten times that.

He writes to ask my result and therefore I should like the enclosed sent to him.

Yours very truly and respectfully

C. S. Peirce

C. P. Patterson Esq.

Supt. U.S. Coast Survey

P. S. My results for the single days are absolutely independent of one another. But the European observers cover up the real discordancy of their results by first using them all to calculate a single value of a certain constant , where most of the discordancy goes, & then applying that to the several days which are thus bound to agree, pretty well.

Transcription by Max Fisch, revised by Sara Barrena (2016)
Una de las ventajas de los textos en formato electrónico respecto de los textos impresos es que pueden corregirse con gran facilidad mediante la colaboración activa de los lectores que adviertan erratas, errores o simplemente mejores transcripciones. En este sentido agradeceríamos que se enviaran todas las sugerencias y correcciones a sbarrena@unav.es
Proyecto de investigación "La correspondencia del tercer viaje europeo de Charles S. Peirce (septiembre-noviembre 1877)"

Fecha del documento: 2 de diciembre 2016
Última actualización: 17 de agosto 2017

[Main Page]