With more eloquence than judgment, he propounded theses bringing into relief the points in which the new doctrines clashed with the old.
Johnson hated to be questioned; and Boswell was eternally catechizing him on all kinds of subjects, and sometimes propounded such questions as, "What would you do, sir, if you were locked up in a tower with a baby ?"
The mathematical theory of probability and the allied theory of the combinatorial analysis were in effect created by the correspondence between Pascal and Fermat, concerning certain questions as to the division of stakes in games of chance, which had been propounded to the former by the gaming philosopher De Mere.
Its success greatly helped to break down the old prejudices, and to bring home to the minds of ordinary men the truth of the new ideas propounded by Galileo and Torricelli.
The summer is propagated by the mosquito (Anopheles claviger) marks a new epoch; the most diverse theories as to its origin had hitherto been propounded, but it is now possible to combat it on a definite plan, by draining the marshes, protecting the houses by fine mosquito-proof wire netting (for Anopheles is not active by day), improving the water supply, &c., while for those who have fever, quinine (now sold cheaply by the state) is a great specific. A great improvement is already apparent; and a law carried in 1903 for the Bonifica dell' Agro Romano compels the proprietors within a radius of some 6 m.