## The Story of Numbers"Completely fascinating." TIMES EDUCATIONAL SUPLEMENT Journeying through time, THE STORY OF NUMBERS explores the history of mathematics to trace the rise of various number sysems in cultures from Mesopotamia to the modern Computer Era. John McLeish reveals how these number systems in turn have shaped the cultures that devised them. From the secrets and the beauty of the Mayan calendar, to Arabaian algebra, the Chinese counting board, from Pythagoras to Newton to Boole, McLeish uncovers the human side of numbers, who used them and how they have shaped our world. |

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### Contents

Introduction | 1 |

The Language of Number | 7 |

The Amerindians and Number | 21 |

Copyright | |

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### Common terms and phrases

6th century bc abstract Al-Khwarizmi algebra algorithm analytical engine ancient answer Arabic arithmetic arithmetic mean astronomical Babbage Babbage's Babylonian Bacon base binary calculation calendar century bc Chinese Chinese mathematics Christian civilisation counting culture decimal system developed Diophantus divided division divisors Egyptian equal equation example fact fingers geometry Greek human ideas Incas indeterminate equation invented Jewish kind knowledge known kosher language large number logarithms logic machine mathematicians mathematics Maya Mayan means method modern multiply Napier's nature Newton notation number system operations original orlah papyrus piece practical priests problem Pythagoras quadratic quipu recognised remainder result Rhind papyrus root rules sacred scholars scientific scientists sequence sexagesimal solution solve square sticks subtraction Sumerian symbols tally tally sticks Talmud terumah theorem things Turing Turing machine unit fractions unknown numbers vigesimal whole numbers words write written zero