Science Networks. Historical Studies

Travelling Mathematics - The Fate of Diophantos' Arithmetic

Authors: Meskens, Ad

  • Presents comprehensive coverage on Diophantos and the Arithmetika  
  • Includes the Nachleben of the Arithmetika during the Middle Ages and the Renaissance
  • Provides an in depth study of the mathematics of the Arithmetika
  • Gives teachers examples of how the development of mathematics is not always rectilinear
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eBook $109.00
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  • ISBN 978-3-0346-0643-1
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  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $149.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-3-0346-0642-4
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover $149.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-3-0348-0314-4
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

In this book the author presents a comprehensive study of Diophantos’ monumental work known as Arithmetika, a highly acclaimed and unique set of books within the known Greek mathematical corpus. Its author, Diophantos, is an enigmatic figure of whom we know virtually nothing. Starting with Egyptian, Babylonian and early Greek mathematics the author paints a picture of the sources the Arithmetika may have had. Life in Alexandria, where Diophantos lived, is described and, on the basis of the limited available evidence, his biography is outlined. Of Arithmetika’s 13 books only 6 survive in Greek. It was not until 1971 that these were complemented by the discovery of 4 other books in an Arab translation. This allows the author to describe the structure, the contents and the mathematics of the Arithmetika in detail. Furthermore it is shown that Diophantos had a remarkable skill to solve higher degree equations. In the second part, the author draws our attention to the survival of Diophantos’ work in both Arab and European mathematical cultures. Once Xylander’s critical 1575 edition reached its European public, the fame of the Arithmetika grew. It was studied, translated and modified by such authors as Bombelli, Stevin and Viète. It reached its pinnacle of fame in 1621 with the publication of Bachet’s translation into Latin. The marginal notes by Fermat in his copy of Diophantos, including his famous “Last Theorem”, were the starting point of a whole new research subject: the theory of numbers.

Reviews

From the reviews:

“The chapters are really surveys of the existing literature. … The book begins with an outline of early arithmetic and algebra … . Travelling Mathematics provides a wonderful overview of the Arithmetic and a valuable account of its influence. Anyone interested in Greek mathematics and in the history of algebra and number theory will want to read Meskens’ book and follow the many references provided.” (Fernando Q. Gouvêa, The Mathematical Association of America, January, 2011)

“This book is a very good introduction to the literature available on Diophantus and the interpretations of his work, and provides the reader with solid information on the various editions, their history and their background. … a must-read for anyone studying the number theoretic contributions by mathematicians from Bachet and Fermat to Euler and beyond.” (Franz Lemmermeyer, Zentralblatt MATH, Vol. 1204, 2011)


Table of contents (10 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook $109.00
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-0346-0643-1
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $149.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-3-0346-0642-4
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover $149.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-3-0348-0314-4
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Travelling Mathematics - The Fate of Diophantos' Arithmetic
Authors
Series Title
Science Networks. Historical Studies
Series Volume
41
Copyright
2010
Publisher
Birkhäuser Basel
Copyright Holder
Springer Basel AG
eBook ISBN
978-3-0346-0643-1
DOI
10.1007/978-3-0346-0643-1
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-0346-0642-4
Softcover ISBN
978-3-0348-0314-4
Series ISSN
1421-6329
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
X, 210
Topics