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Mathematics in ancient Iraq : a social history

Author: Eleanor Robson
Publisher: Princeton, N.J. : Princeton University Press, ©2008.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
This work traces the origins and development of mathematics in the ancient Near East, from its earliest beginnings in the fourth millennium BCE to the end of the indigenous intellectual culture in the second century BCE when cuneiform writing was gradually abandoned.
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Genre/Form: History
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Eleanor Robson
ISBN: 9780691091822 069109182X
OCLC Number: 174112760
Awards: Winner of History of Science Society's Pfizer Award 2011.
Commended for British-Kuwait Friendship Society Prize in Middle Eastern Studies 2009 (United Kingdom).
Shortlisted for Choice Magazine Outstanding Reference/Academic Book Award 2009.
Description: xxvii, 441 pages : illustrations, maps ; 25 cm
Contents: Chapter one: Scope, methods, sources --
1.1 The subject: ancient Iraq and its mathematics --
1.2 the artefacts: Assyriological and mathematical analysis --
1.3 The contexts: textuality, materiality, and social history --
Chapter two: Before the mid-third millennium --
2.1 Background and evidence --
2.2 Quantitative management and emerging statehood --
2.3 Enumeration and abstraction --
2.4 Symmetry, geometry, and visual culture --
Chapter three: The later third millennium --
3.1 Background and evidence --
3.2 Maps, plans, and itineraries: visual and textual representations of spatial relationships --
3.3 Accounting for time and labour: approximation, standardisation, prediction --
3.4 The development of the sexagesimal place value system (spvs) --
Chapter four: The early second millennium --
4.1 Background and evidence --
4.2 Metrology, multiplication, memorisation: elementary mathematics education --
4.3 Words and pictures, reciprocals and squares --
4.4 Measurement, justice, and the ideology of kingship --
Chapter five: Assyria --
5.1 Background and evidence --
5.2 Palatial and mercantile numeracy in early Assyria --
5.3 Counting heads, marking time: quantifications in royal inscriptions and records --
5.4 Aru: number manipulation in Neo-Assyrian scholarship --
Chapter six: The later second millennium --
6.1 Background and evidence --
6.2 Tabular accounting in southern Babylonia --
6.3 Land surveyors and their records in northern Babylonia --
6.4 Quantification as literary device in the epic of Gilgames --
Chapter seven: The early first millennium --
7.1 Background and evidence --
7.2 Libraries and schools: the formalisation of the first-millennium scribal curriculum --
7.3 Home economics: numeracy in a mid-first-millennium urban household --
7.4 Measuring houses, maintaining professionalism --
Chapter eight: The later first millennium --
8.1 Background and evidence --
8.2 Babylon: mathematics in the service of astronomy? --
8.3 Achaemenid Uruk: the Sangu-Ninurta and Ekur-zkir families --
8.4 Seleucid Uruk: the Hunzu and Sin-leqi-unninni families --
Chapter nine: Epilogue --
9.1 The big picture: three millennia of mathematics in ancient Iraq --
9.2 Ancient mathematics in the modern world --
9.3 Inside ancient mathematics: translation, representation, interpretation --
9.4 The worlds of ancient mathematics: history, society, community --
Appendix a: Metrological systems --
Appendix b: Published mathematical tablets.
Responsibility: Eleanor Robson.
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Abstract:

Traces the origins and development of mathematics in the ancient Middle East, from its earliest beginnings in the fourth millennium BCE to the end of indigenous intellectual culture in the second  Read more...

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Winner of the 2011 Pfizer Award for Best Scholarly Book, History of Science Society One of Choice's Outstanding Academic Titles for 2009 Honourable Mention in the British-Kuwait Friendship Society Read more...

 
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