The following is a list of his principal works: - Traite d'optique sur la gradation de la lumiere (1729 and 1760); Entretiens sur la cause d'inclinaison des orbites des planetes (1734); Traite de navire, &c. (1746, 4to); La Figure de la terre determinee,.
Legendre, in 1783, extended Maclaurin's theorem concerning ellipsoids of revolution to the case of any spheroid of revolution where the attracted point, instead of being limited to the axis or equator, occupied any position in space; and Laplace, in his treatise Theorie du mouvement et de la figure elliptique des planetes (published in 1784), effected a still further generalization by proving, what had been suspected by Legendre, that the theorem was equally true for any confocal ellipsoids.
Finally, in a celebrated memoir, Theorie des attractions des spheroides et de la figure des planetes, published in 1785 among the Paris Memoirs for the year 1782, although written after the treatise of 1784, Laplace treated exhaustively the general problem of the attraction of any spheroid upon a particle situated outside or upon its surface.
Laplace's first separate work, Theorie du mouvement et de la figure elliptique des planetes (1784), was published at the expense of President Bochard de Saron.
He also, about this time, wrote his " Recherches sur la figure des planetes," published in the Memoires of the French Academy, of which he was elected a member in succession to le Rond d'Alembert in 1783.
The most important of these are his memoirs "Sur les inegalites seculaires des moyens mouvements des planetes," "Sur la variation des constantes arbitraires dans les questions de mecanique," both published in the Journal of the Ecole Polytechnique (1809); "Sur la libration de la lune," in Connaiss.
That Sur la theorie des variations des elements des planetes, et en particulier des variations des grands axes de leurs orbites.
His first work on this abstruse subject, entitled T heorie des perturbations de la lune, qui sont dues a faction des planetes,1 is remarkable for the boldness of its conception, and constitutes an important addition to celestial dynamics.