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date: 15 September 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The chapter surveys Greek mathematics and astronomy, as far as it can be known from works before circa 300 bce. Key sources are the now-fragmentary histories of astronomy and of geometry composed by Eudemus of Rhodes, a student of Aristotle. Eudemus focused on “first discoverers” of theorems or procedures. The role of deductive mathematical proof in Greek mathematics is central, derives from the agonistic character of Greek culture, and probably largely displaced earlier more practical or procedural mathematics. The main lines of mathematical investigation that survive concerned geometry and also arithmetic and number theory. Many of these early mathematicians were also astronomers. The main lines of astronomical investigation concerned the motions of the sun, moon, and planets, about which a variety of observations were made, and for which a variety of models were constructed.

Keywords: Archytas, arithmetic, Eudemus of Rhodes, harmonics, Hippocrates of Chios, Oenopides of Chios, Philolaus, Pythagorean theorem, squaring the circle, Theodorus of Cyrene

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