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ANCIENT INDIAN MATHEMATICIANS

Updated on November 10, 2008

Baudhayana

( 800 BC - about 740 BC)

.Nothing much is known about Baudhayana, apart from the fact that he was a priest and a skilled craftsman. His interest in mathematics must have purely for ritualistic practices like construction of altars for sacrifices and mundane needs of a craftsman. In the Sulbasutra of which he was the earliest contributor, we find geometric solutions to linear equations of a single unknowns and approximate values of √2 correct to five decimal places. Though there are several values of π mentioned in Baudhayana's Sulbasutra, the nearest is 900/289 = 3.114

Manava

(750 BC - about 690 BC)

Manava Sulbasutra was not only brought out much later than Baudhayana’s Sulbasutra, but is also a minor one. His work contains approximate constructions of circles from rectangles, and squares from circles. In Manava’s works he was able to calculate the value of π = 25/8 = 3.125.

Apastamba

(600 BC - about 540 BC)

Like Budhayana and Apastamba, is a shadowy figure of antiquity about whose personal life nothing much is known. In his version of Sulvasutra, there are six chapters and he was able to solve the The general linear equation 1 + 1/3 + 1/(34) - 1/(3434). In his work he also tries to dividing a segment into 7 equal parts and attempted the problem of problem of squaring the circle.

Panini

(520 BC - about 460 BC)

Panini was born in Shalatula a town on the banks of the river Indus which is now in modern Pakistan. He was a Sanskrit grammarian whose major contributions were in the field of phonetics, phonology, and morphology. Much of the algebraic nature of Indian mathematics arose as a consequence of the structure of the Sanskrit language. Mathematics in fact was an outcome of linguistic developments in India and Panini laid down the formal rules and definitions of Sanskrit grammar which gave it its linguistic perfection.

Panini's major work is a treatise called Astadhyayi (or Astaka ) . Panini was a forerunner of the modern formal language theory used to specify computer languages. Though The Backus Normal Form was discovered independently by John Backus in 1959, Panini’s notation is equivalent in its power to that of Backus and has many similar properties.

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  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 5 years ago from India

    thank you Shmck

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    Shmchk 5 years ago

    Good work.

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 5 years ago from India

    thank you ajay for your quotes and comments.

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    ajay 5 years ago

    you missed many points baudhayana was the first to find pythagoras theorem in 800 bce long before pythagoras in 500 bce.

    we owe a lot to the indians who taught us how to count without which no wothwhile scientific discovery could have been made --- albert einstein

    i am convinced that everything has come down to us from the banks of the Ganges, - astronomy, astrology, metempsychosis, etc. It is very important to note that some 2,500 years ago at the least Pythagoras went from Samos to the Ganges to learn geometry...But he would certainly not have undertaken such a strange journey had the reputation of the Brahmins' science not been long established in Europe.” -- voltaire

    baudhayana's proof is very simple and easy that even a 6th satnadard student can also understand easily while the proof of pythagoras is toooooo complicated and big.

    indians are not great but the greatest

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 5 years ago from India

    Thank you Mountain Blossom I feel honored by your gracious comment

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    Marianne Kellow 5 years ago from SE Thailand

    I'm not a mathematician but your writing makes me want to find out a lot more. Most excellent! thank you. MB

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 5 years ago from India

    thank you shakti pratap singh

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 5 years ago from India

    thank you suchisikta paul

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 5 years ago from India

    thank you rafsil

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    shakti pratap singh 5 years ago

    one day we will regain our lost glory and break the dominance of westerners.again the world will follow us and we will regain our status of "vishwa guru".for this every youth of our nation must recall our grand heritage and be determined for this.when these westerners can sing about their false glory then why not we about our true and time immemorial grand heritage.

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    suchisikta paul 5 years ago

    very very good and interesting

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    rafsil 5 years ago

    thank uuuuuuuuu

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 5 years ago from India

    Thank you ajay.I fully concurr with your suggestion that we should regain our lost glory.The potential is there, all that is needed is the determination to regain it.

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    ajay 5 years ago

    well this webpage tells the importance and achievements of indian mathematics this must be followed once again and india must regain it's lost prosperity

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 5 years ago from India

    thank you Shashank

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    shashank nandeshwar 5 years ago

    it was very good and fantastics.

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 5 years ago from India

    thank you abhay your comments are very correct

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    abhaydagade@gmail.com 5 years ago

    everybody should study jain mathematics witch is full knowledge of detail & astonishing full knowledge of mathematics, useful even today.

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 6 years ago from India

    thank you poojamanjunath

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    poojamanjunath9@gmail.com 6 years ago

    thakyou it made me to complete my maths project..

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 6 years ago from India

    thank you sweety class--IX

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    sweety class--IX 6 years ago

    GOOD VERY GOOD

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 6 years ago from India

    thank you HEPSIBAH JEBAROSE

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 6 years ago from India

    Thank you tindu

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 6 years ago from India

    Thank you Sameera Sheikh

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 6 years ago from India

    Thank you charu

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 6 years ago from India

    thank you subhakant tripathy

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    HEPSIBAH JEBAROSE VIII-std 6 years ago

    VERY GOOD . ITS EXCELLENT.

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    tindu 6 years ago

    its vvvvvvv useful

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    sameera_sheikh 7 years ago

    very very good

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    charu 7 years ago

    it's excellent very useful!

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 7 years ago from India

    Thanks Shubham

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    shubham 7 years ago

    IT'svery fantastic excellent WORK.

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 7 years ago from India

    Thanks tarun

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    tarun 7 years ago

    very good....

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 7 years ago from India

    thanks abhilash

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    abhilash 7 years ago

    contains all info. and thanks

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 7 years ago from India

    thanks harshini

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    harshini 7 years ago

    thanks for helping my maths priject :-)

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 7 years ago from India

    Thanks Piya

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    Piya 7 years ago

    Very Good

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    guest 8 years ago

    thanx

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 8 years ago from India

    Thanks hampak

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    hampak 8 years ago from worldwide

    nice good work

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 8 years ago from India

    thanks abi

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    abi 8 years ago

    thks a lotz....

  • ram_m profile image
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    ram_m 8 years ago from India

    Thank you

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    Rebecca Graf 8 years ago from Wisconsin

    Very informative.