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Arabic numerals

The numerals of the modern decimal system are called Arabic, as Europeans borrowed them from the Arabs.

Филипп К.
10 February, 2020

However, presumably these digits originate from Southern India. The very word "numbers" comes from the reverse reading of the Arabic al-hisa or hisat "pebbles".

arabic numerals Arabic numbers became known to the Arabs thanks to the Indian books on mathematics and astronomy of Brahmagupta, written in 628. Books were brought from India for the Abbasid caliph Al Mansur, who ordered to translate them into Arabic and write on their basis a new book explaining the movement of the planets to the Arabs.

In 813, the Arab scholar Muhammad ibn Musa al-Khwarzimi used Indian numerals, and in 825 he distributed the article known in Latin under the title Al-Khaorizmi de Numero Indorun, which means "Algorithms in Indian Numbers". Thanks to this article, the Arabs figured out the mathematics of the Indians and began to use the system of their numerals. Al-Khwarizmi is also the author of the famous book "Kitab al-Jabr wa-l-al-Mukabal", the term "algebra" derives from this book title.

Each letter of the Arabic alphabet has its own numerical value, which corresponds to numbers from one to a thousand.

arabic numerals from one to a thousand

The important fact is that the Arabs began to use the number "zero". The word "numeral" (in the Russian language) is taken from the Arabic word "syfr" ("zero") . The number "zero" was not immediately accepted in Europe. Europeans continued to use the accepted system of numerals from 1 to 9 for another four centuries and said that Muslims use a number that does not mean anything.

Initially, each arabic numeral consisted of such a number of angles that corresponded to its digital value. Their forms we are familiar with were formed as a result of rounding the corners for the convenience of writing them in cursive.

arabic numeral a number of angles

Due to the close relationships between Christian Barcelona (the County of Barcelona) and Muslim Cordoba (Caliphate of Cordoba), Pope Sylvester II had the opportunity to access scientific information no one had in Europe that time. Therefore, he was one of the first Europeans who got acquainted with Arabic numerals, understand the convenience of their use, and began to advocate for their introduction into European science.

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"Политика компании / Company policy", Бизнес перевод, Translator №724

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