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    Was Pythagoras Chinese?: Examination of the Right Triangle Theory in Ancient China (Pennsylvania State University Studies) (Paperback) By (author) Frank J. Swetz, By (author) T.I. Kao

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    DescriptionThe title of this monograph, while intended to intrigue and attract the otherwise unresponsive reader, is not whimsically conceived. Of course, the historical figure of mathematical fame known as Pythagoras, born on the island of Samos in the 6th century B.C., was Greek, not Chinese. But there is another "Pythagoras" equally deserving fame. He is the man who first proved the proposition that "the sum of the squares of the legs of a right triangle is equal to the square of the hypotenuse." For hundreds of years this theorem has borne the name of Pythagoras of Samos, but was he really the first person to demonstrate the universal validity of this theorem? The issue is controversial. Seldom are mathematical discoveries the product of a single individual's genius. Often centuries and thousands of miles separate the appearance and the isolated reappearance of the same mathematical or scientific theory.It is now acknowledged that the "Pascal Triangle" method of determining the coefficients of a binomial expansion was known in Sung China 300 years before Pascal was born, and that the root extraction algorithm credited to the 19th-century British mathematician W. G. Homer was employed by Han mathematicians of the 3rd century A.D. If, then, these mathematical processes are to bear the names of the persons who devised them, surely "Pascal" and "Homer" were Chinese. So too might such an argument be posed for the Pythagorean Theorem on the basis of evidence contained in ancient Chinese mathematics texts. It is the purpose of this monograph to present and examine this evidence. This is a joint publication of the Penn State Press and the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.Penn State Study No. 40


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  • Full bibliographic data for Was Pythagoras Chinese?

    Title
    Was Pythagoras Chinese?
    Subtitle
    Examination of the Right Triangle Theory in Ancient China
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Frank J. Swetz, By (author) T.I. Kao
    Physical properties
    Format: Paperback
    Number of pages: 108
    Width: 152 mm
    Height: 224 mm
    Thickness: 10 mm
    Weight: 181 g
    Language
    English
    ISBN
    ISBN 13: 9780271012384
    ISBN 10: 0271012382
    Classifications

    BIC E4L: MAT
    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: S7.8
    B&T Book Type: NF
    B&T Merchandise Category: TXT
    B&T Modifier: Subject Development: 01
    B&T General Subject: 710
    BISAC V2.8: HIS008000
    BIC subject category V2: PBM
    BISAC V2.8: SCI034000
    Ingram Subject Code: MA
    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 26250
    BISAC V2.8: MAT012000, MAT015000
    DC18: 516.22
    LC subject heading:
    DC22: 516/.22/0951
    LC classification: QA27.C5 S95
    LC subject heading: ,
    DC22: 516.220951
    LC subject heading:
    LC classification: 76041806
    Thema V1.0: PBM
    Illustrations note
    1, black & white illustrations
    Publisher
    Pennsylvania State University Press
    Imprint name
    Pennsylvania State University Press
    Publication date
    12 October 2001
    Publication City/Country
    Pennsylvania