A Budget of Paradoxes, originally published in 1915, is mathematician Augustus De Morgan's most accessible and entertaining work. Well-known for his wit, De Morgan takes aim at those people he calls "paradoxers," which in modern terms would most closely resemble crackpots. Paradoxers, however, are not crazy, necessarily-rather, they hold views wildly outside the accepted sphere. If you believed the world was round when everyone else knew that it was flat, you would be a paradoxer.
In this book, De Morgan reviews a number of books from his own library written by such "crackpots" who claim to have solved a great many of the puzzles of mathematics and science, including squaring a circle, creating perpetual motion, and overcoming gravity. Each is thoroughly put in his place in ways both entertaining and informative to readers.
Skeptics, students of science, and anyone who likes pondering a puzzle will find this book a delightful read.
British mathematician AUGUSTUS DE MORGAN (1806-1871) invented the term mathematical induction. Among his many published works is Trigonometry and Double Algebra (1849).