Person: Hypsicles Of Alexandria
Hypsicles of Alexandria was a Greek mathematician who wrote a treatise on regular polyhedra. He is the author of what has been called Book XIV of Euclid's Elements, a work which deals with inscribing regular solids in a sphere.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- What little is known of Hypsicles' life is related by him in the preface to the so-called Book XIV.
- In the so-called Book XIV Hypsicles proves some results due to Apollonius.
- Arab writers also claim that Hypsicles was involved with the so-called Book XV of the Elements.
- We do not know for certain that Hypsicles wrote a text on polygonal numbers, but it is fairly certain that he did write such a text which has been lost.
- This work on polygonal numbers is related to the ideas on arithmetic progressions that appear in another work by Hypsicles, making it more likely that indeed Hypsicles had indeed done original work on this topic.
- The work which involves arithmetic progressions is Hypsicles' On the Ascension of Stars.
- Hypsicles makes a false assumption involving arithmetic progressions so that his results are wrong.
- The mistake which Hypsicles makes is to assume that the rising times form an arithmetical progression.
- Without the aid of the sine function and trigonometry it is hard to see how Hypsicles could have done better.
Born about 190 BC, Alexandria, Egypt. Died about 120 BC.
View full biography at MacTutor
Tags relevant for this person:
African, Ancient Arab, Ancient Greek, Origin Egypt, Special Numbers And Numerals
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive