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SCIENTIA – http://www.scientiajournal.

org
International Review of Scientific Synthesis – ISSN pending
Vol. 124 – February 7th, 2013 – DOI pending

History of the Journal Scientia from 1907 to 1988

Redazione di Scientia
Istituto Scientia – http://www.istitutoscientia.it – via Ortola 65 – 54100 Massa – Italy

Abstract

This article contains a short history of the journal Scientia, from 1907 to 1988, before it was
refounded in 2013 as an online journal. Some of the great scientists, mathematicians and
philosophers who wrote articles for Scientia, including Einstein, Lorentz, Poincaré, Mach,
Rutherford, Freud, Peano, Russell, Golgi, Eddington, De Broglie, Heisenberg, Fermi, and
Carnap are mentioned.
Scientia was founded in 1907 by the mathematician Federigo Enriques and the engineer
Eugenio Rignano, both associated with the University of Pisa, Italy. The purpose of the journal
was to compensate for the increasing specialization of sciences, that were losing a unified view
of nature and the universe.

Initially the journal was called Rivista di Scienza (that means Review of Science in Italian) and
in 1910 it was changed to Scientia (Latin for knowledge). The frequency of publication was 2
volumes per year. The subtitle of the journal, in 4 different languages - English, Italian, French
and German - was:

International Review of Scientific Synthesis.

Rivista Internazionale di Sintesi Scientifica.

Revue Internationale de Synthèse scientifique.

Internationale Zeitschrift für Wissenschaftliche Synthese.

In 1925 (with vol. 38) a subtitle in Spanish was added:

Revista Internacional de Sintesis Cientifica.

Scientia accepted specialized papers in any field of science, even though the preference was to
publish research papers that might contribute to connecting different sciences or different areas
of a single science. Scientia also had unique characteristics, described later in this article.

During the first decades of publication, many important scientists, mathematicians and
philosophers wrote papers for Scientia, including Einstein (vol. 15, 1914), Lorentz (vol. 16,
1914), Poincaré (vol. 9, 1911 and vol. 12, 1912), Mach (vol. 7, 1910), Rutherford (vol. 16,
1914 and vol. 55, 1934), Freud (vol. 14, 1913), Peano (vol. 18, 1915), Russell (vol. 13, 1913,
vol. 16, 1914, vol. 31, 1922 and vol. 46, 1929), Golgi (vol. 16, 1914), Eddington (vol.
18, 1915, vol. 23, 1918 and vol. 33, 1923), De Broglie (vol. 42, 1927 and vol. 55, 1934),
Heisenberg (vol. 63, 1938), Fermi (vol. 51, 1932 and vol. 55, 1934) and Carnap (vol. 60,
1936).

All the issues of the old journal Scientia, from 1907 to 1988, have been scanned by University
of Bologna, Italy, and are available online at this URL: http://amshistorica.unibo.it/scientia .

While scientific research continued to specialize, Scientia did not change its ideal vision of an
unified and holistic vision of science. Maintaining such attitude, against the mainstream
tendency, Scientia gradually lost importance, especially after World War II, until 1988, when
it ceased publication.
Now, in early 2013, the journal Scientia is being refounded as an online journal by the
organization Istituto Scientia (which was created in Italy in 1995 and incorporated in 2002),
with the realistic purpose to retain, at least, these features of the previous journal:

• Accepting papers in any field of science and in other disciplines such as mathematics,
philosophy, linguistics, history, etc., provided that the approach has a scientific
orientation.
• Accepting papers in the entire range between popularization (such as on Scientific
American) and high specialization (e.g. Nature, Science, and journals on specific
sciences).
• Accepting papers in different languages, that initially (1907) were Italian, English,
French and German, and later included Spanish. While we encourage writing papers in
English for obvious reasons of international usefulness, we accept papers in any
European language (based on Roman characters).
• We will be open to new concepts and theories, which may be difficult to accepted by
the usual peer-reviewed journals, provided that such theories have a strong and clear
background in their discipline.

(Thanks to David Spector for having suggested several changes for a better English).