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Convergence articles

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The square of a certain number multiplied by itself and by 200 is 446,976. What is the number?

This is the title page of the Margarita philosophica (Pearl of Wisdom) of Gregor Reisch (1467 - 1525). The first edition was published in 1503. This work was used as a university textbook in the early sixteenth century.

A discussion of the meaning of mathematical unsolvability in the context of the history of Abel's proof of the unsolvability of the quintic equation in terms of radicals.

A vessel is anchored in 3 fathoms of water and the cable passes over a sheave in the bowsprit which is 6 ft above the water.

A translation of and commentary on Frans van Schooten's work on constructions using only a straightedge. Van Schooten's postulates for use of the straightedge, however, allow the copying of one line segment onto another.

A man, woman, and two boys desire to cross a river, but their boat has weight restrictions!

A mouse is at the top of a poplar tree 60 braccia high, and a cat is on the ground at its foot. The mouse descends 1/2 a braccia a day and at night it turns back 1/6 of a braccia.

Problems from a 15th-century French manuscript, including one with negative solutions.

A woodcutter starts to fell a tree 4 feet in diameter, and cuts half way through. One face of the cut is horizontal, and the other face is inclined to the horizontal at an angle of 45 degrees. Find the volume of the wood cut out.

Here is the title page of part I of the General Trattato di Numeri (General Treatise on Number and Measure) (1556) of Niccolo Tartaglia (1500-1557). This is an extensive work on elementary mathematics that was popular in Italy for several decades after its publication.

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