lecture4 - Pythagoras , .C., tutoredbyThales,thefirstofthe

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HISTORY OF MATHEMATICS – LECTURE 4 – TUESDAY 6 TH SEPTEMBER Pythagoras While few details of Pythagoras’ life can be stated with certainty, it is thought that he was born on the Greek island of Samos around 569 B.C. He travelled extensively, and it is documented that he was tutored by Thales, the first of the great Greek mathematicians, and advised by him to go to Egypt in order to continue his studies. Eventually Pythagoras settled in southern Italy, and founded a school which would continue his legacy for generations. Students at the school (both male and female) were subject to strict rules, and it can be thought of as being similar to a monastery. Students lived at the school, owned no personal possessions, and were required to assume a mainly vegetarian diet. There were four areas of study at the school: arithmetic, music, geometry, and astronomy. It is worth noting that this curriculum, along with logic, grammar, and rhetoric formed the seven subjects looked upon for the next 2000 years as being necessary to become an educated person.
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