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Stories by Keith Devlin1 articles archived since 1845

The Man of Numbers: Fibonacci's Arithmetic Revolution [Excerpt]

Before the 13th century Europeans used Roman numerals to do arithmetic. Leonardo of Pisa, better known today as Fibonacci, is largely responsible for the adoption of the Hindu–Arabic numeral system in Europe, which revolutionized not only mathematics but commerce and trade as well. How did the system spread from the Arab world to Europe, and what would our lives be without it?

March 8, 2013 — Keith Devlin

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