René Dugas was influenced by Pierre Duhem (1861-1916), the founder of the field of the history of medieval physics. Duhem's fundamental thesis in the history of physics is known as the "continuity thesis" (cf. Hannam's The Genesis of Science for a semi-popular introduction) which is in contrast to what could be called Kuhn's "discontinuity or rupture thesis" of paradigm shifts. Duhem likened the history of physics to the evolution of the construction of a cathedral: a continuous, centuries-long development and refinement.
Duhem's magnum opus in the history of physics is:
He begins with Plato and Aristotle and works up until right before the Renaissance. Despite the title, he was never able to complete the work up until Copernicus's time, but he did write about Copernicus and held a very unique view of the "Galileo affair" in To Save the Phenomena.
Poignant excerpts are translated in:
He not only reports the historical facts but also keenly interprets them from the standpoint of a modern physicist and shows how the scientists of the High Middle Ages, especially, laid the foundations of Newtonian physics. Duhem's works are much deeper philosophically and historiographically than Dugas's; Dugas focuses more on the theoretical and mathematical content of the theories.
This work influenced Dugas profoundly:
There's also this on the Parisian precursors of Galileo, which has been translated into English: