Questions tagged [ancient-egypt]

For questions about events occurring in Egypt and the immediate areas around it between 3500 B.C. and 0 A.D.

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Pefsu problem explanation

Problem no. 12 from Moscow Mathematical Papyrus: Example of calculation of $13$ heqats of grain If someone says to you: Take $13$ heqats of grain to make them into $18$ jugs of beer Note that the ...
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What does des mean in ancient Egyptian? [closed]

Looking at the pefsu problems of ancient Egyptian mathematical papyrii I am wondering what does the word des mean. It is usually used together with the word jug to form des-jug, but sometimes the ...
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Help understanding Egyptian circle

I was reading this Wikipedia page searching for the Egyptian area of circle and there is a following picture there: Trying to understand what is meant by this since it is under the "Area" ...
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101 views

Are the ancient Egyptians and the ancient Mesopotamians really the cradles of civilization? [closed]

Is it true that ancient Greek knowledge of mathematics, science, astronomy, engineering, architecture, civilization came from the ancient Minoan civilization and ancient Mycenaean civilizations and ...
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296 views

Does the story about Thales and the heights of pyramids illustrate that Thales did not know of AAA triangle similarity?

Thales understood similar triangles and right triangles, and what is more, used that knowledge in practical ways. The story is told in DL (loc. cit.) that he measured the height of the pyramids by ...
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How old is the Pythagorean Theorem? [closed]

More specifically, what is the oldest evidence of human awareness of what we now call the Pythagorean Theorem? The phrase, "evidence of human awareness" was used to exclude a different question of ...
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334 views

How many digits of Pi did the old Egyptians know?

From "Rhind Papyrus" from 1600 BC we know that the Egyptians had an estimate for $\pi$, namely 3.16, meaning they knew only 2 digits of $\pi$. According to this article they knew more digits, at least ...
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1answer
374 views

Is it known where Eratosthenes first heard of the "well of Syene"?

The American Physical Society's This Month in Physics History; June, ca. 240 B.C. Eratosthenes Measures the Earth says: Eratosthenes had heard from travelers about a well in Syene (now Aswan, Egypt)...
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217 views

How did egyptian mathematical fractions evolve in antiquity?

There are certain explanations on how integers might have evolved, like for example "the wings of a bird to symbolize the number two, clover--leaves three, the legs of an animal four, the fingers on ...
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1answer
3k views

How did the theory of the Horus-eye fractions originate?

In a book, I saw a short anecdote about something called the "Horus-eye" hieroglyph, supposedly used in parts to represent fractions (the book dates to 1997). Wikipedia has an article on the symbol ...
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Was the steam engine really known in ancient Egypt?

Some sources on the Internet state that the steam engine was known in ancient Egypt, although it wasn't used very widely. Is it true? If the answer is yes, it was known, or at least suspected, why ...
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Did geometric patterns in nature suggest the early notions of proportion and ratios?

I'm very interested to learn about historical phenomenology of proportion and ratios, i.e. I want to know how and why people in the past introduced these concepts. As far as I understand symmetric ...
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203 views

What are the earliest accounts of a scientific method?

The ancient Egyptians used examination, diagnosis, treatment and prognosis, to the treatment of diseases, which are all described in Egyptian medical textbooks from around c. 1600 BC. Did the ...
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989 views

Are ancient African mathematicians acknowledged in the history of mathematics?

I have yet to read a math book that mentions ancient African mathematicians at any length or level of detail. There is scant coverage in academic settings in the United States, perhaps elsewhere too. ...
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304 views

How did ancient Egyptians become aware of the analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties of cold?

Cooper, S. M., and R. P. R. Dawber. "The history of cryosurgery." Journal of the royal society of medicine 94.4 (2001): 196-201. claims: The benefits of cold have been appreciated for many ...
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To what degree did ancient Egyptians use Cement Chemistry

From a young age I have been taught that the stones used to create the great pyramids were mined. Concrete and cements were largely invented by the Romans/Greeks especially for use as mortar. More ...