Story behind his death: According to historian Plutarch, Archimedes was researching a mathematical diagram, when a Roman soldier ordered him to meet General Marcus (who was engaged in the siege of Syracuse). But Archimedes declined saying that he had to finish his diagram. Furious, the Roman soldier who did know who Archimedes was, killed him despite orders that he should not be harmed.
About him: Archimedes of Syracuse 287BC – 212 BC was a Greek mathematician, physicist, engineer, inventor, and astronomer. Although few details of his life are known, he is regarded as one of the leading scientists in classical antiquity. Generally considered the greatest mathematician of antiquity and one of the greatest of all time, Archimedes anticipated modern calculus and analysis by applying concepts of infinitesimals and the method of exhaustion to derive and rigorously prove a range of geometrical theorems, including the area of a circle, the surface area and volume of a sphere, and the area under a parabola.
Other mathematical achievements include deriving an accurate approximation of pi, defining and investigating the spiral bearing his name, and creating a system using exponentiation for expressing very large numbers. He was also one of the first to apply mathematics to physical phenomena, founding hydrostatics and statics, including an explanation of the principle of the lever. He is credited with designing innovative machines, such as his screw pump, compound pulleys, and defensive war machines to protect his native Syracuse from invasion.