The Basics of Algebra

What early mathematicians are thought to be responsible for originating the use of algebraic methods and ideas?

To some scholars, Greek (Hellenic) mathematician Diophantus (c. 210-c. 290) is considered the “father of algebra,” as he developed his own algebraic notation. His words were noted and preserved by the Arabs; the translation of his words into Latin in the 16th century led to many algebraic advances. In more “modern” times, French mathematician François Viète (1540-1603; also known by his Latin name, Franciscus Vieta) is often credited as the “founder of modern algebra.” (For more information about Diophantus and Viète, see below.)


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