History of Ancient Mathematics: Some Reflections on the State of the Art

  • Sabetai Unguru
Part of the Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science book series (BSPS, volume 240)


THE HISTORY OF MATHEMATICS typically has been written as if to illustrate the adage “anachronism is no vice.” Most contemporary historians of mathematics, being mathematicians by training, assume tacitly or explicitly that mathematical entities reside in the world of Platonic ideas where they wait patiently to be discovered by the genius of the working mathematician. Mathematical concepts, constructive as well as computational, are seen as eternal, unchanging, unaffected by the idiosyncratic features of the culture in which they appear, each one clearly identifiable in its various historical occurrences, since these occurrences represent different clothings of the same Platonic hypostasis.


Geometrical Problem Book Versus Greek Mathematic Algebraic Language Algebraic Procedure 
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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2004

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  • Sabetai Unguru

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