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Mathematical Treasure: Commercial Arithmetic by Petrus Apianus

Author(s): 
Frank J. Swetz (The Pennsylvania State University)

In 1527, Petrus Apianus (1495-1552), also known as Peter Apian, was appointed to a mathematics position at the University of Ingolstadt.   In the same year, Apianus published a reckoning book directed at the needs of commerce: Ein newe und wolgegründte underweisung aller Kauffmans Rechnung in dreien Büchern (A new and well-founded instruction of all merchant arithmetic).

The images below come from a later edition, published in Frankfurt in 1537. The title page depicts a busy scene of bookkeepers computing.

Title page of commerical arithmetic book by Petrus Apianus, 1537

A didactical diagram is used to illustrate number relationships.

Diagram from a commerical arithmetic book by Petrus Apianus, 1537

The images above are provided courtesy of Columbia University Libraries.

Index to Mathematical Treasures

Frank J. Swetz (The Pennsylvania State University), "Mathematical Treasure: Commercial Arithmetic by Petrus Apianus," Convergence (June 2018)

Dummy View - NOT TO BE DELETED