The Online Encyclopedia and Dictionary







Diophantus of Alexandria - Διόφαντος ο Αλεξανδρεύς - (circa 200/214 - circa 284/298) was an ancient Greek mathematician. He was born around, the exact dates are unkown, 200 A.D. and lived to around 280 A.D.

Although little is known about his life, some biographical information can be computed from his epitaph (see link below). He lived in Alexandria and he died when he was 84 years old. Probably Diophantus was a Hellenized Babylonian.

He was known for his study of equations with variables which take on rational values and these Diophantine equations are named after him. Diophantus is sometimes known as the "father of Algebra". He wrote a total of thirteen books on these equations.

It was in the margin of a translation from Greek to Latin of Diophantus' work Aritmetike (The Arithmetic) from circa 250 that Pierre de Fermat wrote his famous comment that is known as Fermat's last theorem.

Diophantus also wrote a treatise about polygonal numbers.

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Last updated: 06-01-2005 20:15:00
Last updated: 10-29-2005 02:13:46