Prehistory of Mathematics (by Dirk Struik 1965)
First conceptions of number and dates goes back as far as the
Old Stone Age
(the
Paleolithicum
).
As we enter the
New Stone Age
(the
Neolithicum
), we start to understand numerical values and
space relations (going from gathering food to production; hunting to agriculture).
Trades activities promoted the further formation of languages (some rooms for numbers).
The development of the commercial activities stimulated the crystallization of number concept.

Larger units in trading uses the fingers of the hands

Later with 10 as base +addition subtraction
Counting started as finger counting is
incorrect.
Counting by fives and tens came only at a certain stage of social development. Once it’s reached,
number could be expressed with references to a base.
Measure the length and contents of objects (taken from parts of human body – fingers, feet or
hands.
Geometrical patterns occurring in pottery, weaving or basketry (dancing – triangular numbers)
by Neolithic man.
Egyptian Mathematics
Mathematics originated in
Egypt
. Sources are

Moscow Mathematical Papyrus (dates from 1850 BC, computation of a truncated
pyramid)

Rhind Mathematical Papyrus (written by Ahmose in 1650 BC)
Egyptians were able to multiply any two natural numbers. They also knew how to extract square
roots and how to solve linear equations.

Also used h for the unknown

Knew the area of a circle

Knew arithmetic progressions.

Use fraction but in the form of 1/n
SumerianBabylonian Mathematics
Sumerian civilization was absorbed by the Babylonian around 2000 BC. Most of the
mathematical achievement dated back at 2000 BC.