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# ANCIENT MATH

05.11.2008.
The area of study
• The area of study known as the history of
mathematics is an investigation into the
standard mathematical methods and notation of
the past.

## • Greek and Hellenistic mathematics is generally

considered to be one of the most important for
greatly expanding both the method and the subject
matter of mathematics.
The Ishango bone, dating to perhaps
18000 to 20000 B.C.
Earliest known mathematics
• The earliest known mathematics in ancient India
dates from 3000-2600 BC in the Indus Valley
Civilization of North India and Pakistan

## • They used the decimal system, ratios, angles, π, and

used a base 8 numeral system

## • The Indus script has not yet been deciphered

Mesopotamia
• Babylonian mathematics refers to any mathematics
of the people of Mesopotamia until the beginning
of the Hellenistic period.

## • The earliest evidence of written mathematics dates

back to the ancient Sumerians.
• Babylonian mathematics were written using a
sexagesimal (base-60)n numeral system.
Egypt
• Egyptian mathematics refers to mathematics
written in the Egyptian language.

## • The oldest mathematical text discovered so far is

the Moscow papyrus, which is an Egyptian Middle
Kingdom papyrus dated c. 2000—1800 BC.
• The Rhind papyrus (c. 1650 BC) is another major
Egyptian mathematical text, an instruction manual
in arithmetic and geometry.

## • Finally, the Berlin papyrus (c. 1300 BC) shows that

ancient Egyptians could solve a second-order
algebraic equation.
Women in Egypt?
• Hypatia was the daughter of Theon of Alexandria
who was a teacher of mathematics with the
Museum of Alexandria in Egypt.

## • Hypatia corresponded with and hosted scholars

from others cities.

## • Christian bishop, Cyril, a future saint probably

objected to Hypatia on a number of counts
Ancient Indian mathematics
(c. 900 BC — AD 200)

## Brahmi numerals the first century CE

• Vedic mathematics began in the early Iron Age, with
the Shatapatha Brahmana (c. 9th century BC)

## • Sulba Sutras (c. 800-500 BC) were geometry texts

that used irrational numbers and prime numbers

## • Developed Pythagorean triples algebraically and

gave a statement and numerical proof of the
Pythagorean theorem.
• They were the first to develop transfinite numbers,
set theory, logarithms, fundamental laws of
sequences and progressions, permutations and
combinations, squaring and extracting square
roots, and finite and infinite powers.
Greek and Hellenistic mathematics
• Greek mathematics refers to mathematics written
in Greek between about 600 BCE and 450 CE.

## • Greek mathematics is thought to have begun with

Thales (c. 624—c.546 BC) and Pythagoras
(c. 582—c. 507 BC).

## • The Pythagoreans discovered the existence of

irrational numbers.
• Euclid (c. 300 BC) is the earliest example of the
format still used in mathematics today, definition,
axiom, theorem, proof.

## • Some say the greatest of Greek mathematicians, if

not of all time, was Arhimedes (c.287—212 BC) of
Syracuse

## • Death of Archimedes anecdote

• Women were able to contribute to the "search for
wisdom" during the period between 800 BC and
500 BC in Greece.

## • Greek women received their education either in the

home or from well educated experts.

## • Spartan girls received a formal education more

similar to the training boys received (Roice).
Who was Theano?
• Theano was the most famous woman of the
Pythagoreans.

## • She wrote on the "number theory" and explained it

as a principle to create order that helped to
distinguish one thing from another.