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40 votes
Accepted

How did Eratosthenes know the Sun was very far away?

We do not know for sure what Eratosthenes read, but at his time this was a common knowledge. This can be inferred from the book of Archimedes, The sand reckoner (Archimedes was Eratosthenes' ...
Alexandre Eremenko's user avatar
16 votes

How did Eratosthenes know the Sun was very far away?

This is a long answer, explaining more or less step to step why the data available to Eratosthenes indicted that the Sun should be a vast distance from the Earth, thus makings its diverging rays ...
M.A. Golding's user avatar
  • 1,323
4 votes

Ancient Egyptian geometry

Greek writers of Hellenistic times indeed had a tendency to claim that mathematics and astronomy came to Greece from Egypt. This has no conformation whatsoever. Modern studies show that mathematics ...
Alexandre Eremenko's user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

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

The earliest extant description of Erathostenes' method is found in a book by Cleomedes written in the 1st century BC, and no wells are mentioned at all, if it's true that it's stated that whenever ...
xxavier's user avatar
  • 56
4 votes

How did egyptian mathematical fractions evolve in antiquity?

A contibution to a discussion that ended nearly four years may appear quixotic but it is difficult to let stand an answer which, though accurately summing up Boyer's views on the subject, is ...
Jim's user avatar
  • 116
4 votes
Accepted

Ancient Egyptian Mathematicians

We don't know. The documents we have concerning Egyptian and Babylonian Mathematics do not contain the names of their creators.
José Carlos Santos's user avatar
3 votes

Are the ancient Egyptians and the ancient Mesopotamians really the cradles of civilization?

All these assessments about "cradle of civilization" are based on the archeological records that reached us and on surviving texts. The oldest surviving samples of writing come from ...
Alexandre Eremenko's user avatar
3 votes

How did egyptian mathematical fractions evolve in antiquity?

According to Carl Boyer, in his text A History of Mathematics, the earliest record we have regarding fractions in ancient Egypt comes from the Ahmes Papyrus, popularly known as the Rhind Papyrus, ...
nwr's user avatar
  • 6,909
2 votes

To what degree did ancient Egyptians use Cement Chemistry

Davidovits' theory appears to be moving slowly from fringe toward mainstream. Also the possibility of a mixed technique i.e. some carved stones along with cast blocks offers a compromise in the ...
sand1's user avatar
  • 2,422
2 votes

Ancient Egyptian Mathematicians

"But the only Ancient Egyptian mathematician I know of is Ahmes, who said he's just a scribe." Because in Ancient Egypt math was just a tool to solve real problems (ex: inheritance, ...
Jeron Baffom's user avatar
2 votes

How many digits of Pi did the old Egyptians know?

The article does not say what you think it does. The article hypothesizes that the ancient Egyptians used a trundle wheel to accurately measure distance. An estimate of pi is not needed to make an ...
David Hammen's user avatar
  • 1,777
1 vote

What is the Expected Durability/Digitization Efforts of Pre-Hellenistic works that are made from Materials like Papyrus, Bamboo, Bark, Stone, e.t.c?

I ended up emailing the Bodleian Library at Oxford about how they are preserving the Bakhshali manuscript. Here is their reply to my email (I retracted names for privacy reasons): Dear [Retracted], ...
Miss Mae's user avatar
  • 121
1 vote

How many digits of Pi did the old Egyptians know?

The foregoing are inferred estimates of pi by the ancient Egyptians. The only explicit mention of a circumference-to-diameter ratio by the ancient Egyptians is 3 in the Demotic Mathematical Papyri.
R. Parker's user avatar

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