Exponentiation - History of The Notation

History of The Notation

The term power was used by the Greek mathematician Euclid for the square of a line. Archimedes discovered and proved the law of exponents, 10a 10b = 10a+b, necessary to manipulate powers of 10. In the 9th century, the Persian mathematician Muhammad ibn Mūsā al-Khwārizmī used the terms mal for a square and kab for a cube, which later Islamic mathematicians represented in mathematical notation as m and k, respectively, by the 15th century, as seen in the work of Abū al-Hasan ibn Alī al-Qalasādī.

Nicolas Chuquet used a form of exponential notation in the 15th century, which was later used by Henricus Grammateus and Michael Stifel in the 16th century. Samuel Jeake introduced the term indices in 1696. In the 16th century Robert Recorde used the terms square, cube, zenzizenzic (fourth power), surfolide (fifth), zenzicube (sixth), second surfolide (seventh) and Zenzizenzizenzic (eighth). Biquadrate has been used to refer to the fourth power as well.

Some mathematicians (e.g., Isaac Newton) used exponents only for powers greater than two, preferring to represent squares as repeated multiplication. Thus they would write polynomials, for example, as ax + bxx + cx3 + d.

Another historical synonym, involution, is now rare and should not be confused with its more common meaning.

Read more about this topic:  Exponentiation

Other articles related to "history of the notation, notation":

Complex Numbers Exponential - History of The Notation
... kab for a cube, which later Islamic mathematicians represented in mathematical notation as m and k, respectively, by the 15th century, as seen in the work of Abū al-Hasan ibn Alī al-Qalasādī ... Nicolas Chuquet used a form of exponential notation in the 15th century, which was later used by Henricus Grammateus and Michael Stifel in the 16th century ...

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