Crema is a little city near Milan. I must recognize that I wouldn’t have visited it if I had traveled to Lombardia by myself. But I was lucky once again! It’s very beautiful discovering Mathematics by chance when it wasn’t expected. I was in Crema with five of my secondary school students and two of my colleagues because of a Comenius project. We were walking through the beautiful streets of the center of the city and we found this house with a plaque which says that it is the birthplace of Giovanni Vailati (“distinguished mathematician and philosopher”):
Giovanni Vailati was born in this house in April 24, 1863. After going to school in Monza and Lodi, he entered the University of Turin when he was 17 y.o. to study the Engineering degree. He met Giuseppe Peano (Cuneo, 27/08/1858 – Turin, 04.20.1932) there and because of him, Vaitali found his passion in Mathematics, so he attended Mathematics lessons for four years after graduating in Engineering in 1884. In the period 1892-95 he was appointed to second assistant of Peano in Turin and in 1896 he became assistant of Vito Volterra (Ancona, 03/05/1860 – Rome, 11/10/1940). During this time he taught History of Mechanics at the University and worked on the History of Mathematics and Logic, much influenced by Peano. In 1899 he decided to follow his career as a teacher in other Italian cities as Siracussa, Bari, Como and Florence.
His recognition was twofold. First, his contributions in the field of Philosophy led him to occupy a position of prestige in the organizing committee of the first International Congress of Philosophy. In addition, he studied the works of Plato, Euclid and Saccheri, among others, as well as made important contributions in the field of Logic
Location: Vailati’s house (map)