THE IMPORTANCE OF HISTORY IN THE LANGUAGE OF MATHEMATICS
According to Isaac Barrow, “Mathematics – the unshaken Foundation of Sciences, and the plentiful Fountain of Advantage to human affairs.” History in its essence is vital in the concept of Mathematics. The contributions of the people in the past made an important role in the success of our modern discussions in Mathematics.
Behind history are the people who made remarkable discoveries and formulated the world’s greatest achievement in field of Mathematics. According to Banks, Sobel and Walsh in their book entitled, “Algebra: Its Elements and Structure, (1965)”. “It was during the first half of the 6th century that Thales of Miletus computed the height of the Great Pyramid in Egypt by an ingenious method or a method of indirect measurement. Historians claim that demonstrative Geometry began with him. He is given credit for having made a number of elementary discoveries, such as: (1) the base angles of an isosceles triangle are equal, (2) an angle inscribed in a semicircle is a right angle, and (3) any diameter of a circle bisects that circle.” Thales, besides being known as a mathematician, a statesman, an astronomer, and a businessman, is also one of the seven wise men of antiquity. Because of the brilliance of Thales, it opens the door to another branch of mathematics which is Trigonometry. It defines the significance of sides and angles in the application of mathematics in real life situations.
According to Dolciani, Wooton, Bukenbach, Houghton and Mifflin in their book entitled, “Algebra”,” Rene Descartes (1596-1650), one of the greatest scientists of the 17th century, devised and used two perpendicular number lines to identify points in a plane. This is the reason why it is called the Cartesian Coordinate System. It was Descartes who founded Analytic Geometry, and established the link between Algebra and Geometry through graphing. However, he did not consider himself a mathematician because of his great love for philosophy.” The contribution of Descartes inspired modern mathematicians to discover a lot of patterns and mathematical ideas in the prospect of developing its endeavor.
Inside the four corners of the classroom, it is not enough that we discuss numerical computations; we have to deliberately trace back the people who made a significant role in making such beautiful patterns and formulas. — oOo— The author is SST I at Camachiles National High School, Division of Mabalacat City