The History of Mathematics

Mathematics After the Middle Ages

What were the major reasons for advances in 16th-century European mathematics?

There are several reasons for advances in mathematics at the end of the Middle Ages. The major reason, of course, was the beginning of the Renaissance, a time when there was a renewed interest in learning. Another important event that pushed mathematics was the invention of printing, which made many mathematics books, along with useful mathematical tables, available to a wide audience. Still another advancement was the replacement of the clumsy Roman numeral system by Hindu-Arabic numerals. (For more information about the Hindu-Arabic numerals, see “Math Basics.”)


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