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Studies in the History of Indian Mathematics
Edited by: C. S. Seshadri, Chennai Mathematical Institute, Tamil Nadu, India
A publication of Hindustan Book Agency.
Hindustan Book Agency
2010; 402 pp; hardcover
ISBN-10: 93-80250-06-1
ISBN-13: 978-93-80250-06-9
List Price: US$72
Member Price: US$57.60
Order Code: HIN/46
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This volume is the outcome of a seminar on the history of mathematics held at the Chennai Mathematical Institute during January-February 2008 and contains articles based on the talks of distinguished scholars both from the West and from India.

The topics covered include: (1) geometry in the øulvasåtras; (2) the origins of zero (which can be traced to ideas of lopa in Pàõini's grammar); (3) combinatorial methods in Indian music (which were developed in the context of prosody and subsequently applied to the study of tonal and rhythmic patterns in music); (4) a cross-cultural view of the development of negative numbers (from Brahmagupta (c. 628 CE) to John Wallis (1685 CE); (5) Kuññaka, Bhàvanà and Cakravàla (the techniques developed by Indian mathematicians for the solution of indeterminate equations); (6) the development of calculus in India (covering the millennium-long history of discoveries culminating in the work of the Kerala school giving a complete analysis of the basic calculus of polynomial and trigonometrical functions); (7) recursive methods in Indian mathematics (going back to Pàõini's grammar and culminating in the recursive proofs found in the Malayalam text Yuktibhàùà (1530 CE)); and (8) planetary and lunar models developed by the Kerala School of Astronomy. The articles in this volume cover a substantial portion of the history of Indian mathematics and astronomy.

This book will serve the dual purpose of bringing to the international community a better perspective of the mathematical heritage of India and conveying the message that much work remains to be done, namely the study of many unexplored manuscripts still available in libraries in India and abroad.

A publication of Hindustan Book Agency; distributed within the Americas by the American Mathematical Society. Maximum discount of 20% for all commercial channels.


General mathematical audience interested in the history of Indian mathematics.

Table of Contents

  • K. Plofker -- Biographical sketch of David Pingree
  • M. S. Sriram -- Biographical sketch of K. V. Sarma
  • S. G. Dani -- Geometry in the Sulvasutras
  • F. Staal -- On the origins of zero
  • R. Sridharan and M. D. Srinivas -- Combinatorial methods in Indian music: Pratyayas in Sangıtaratnakara of Sarngadeva
  • D. Mumford -- What's so baffling about negative numbers?--A crosscultural comparison
  • A. K. Dutta -- Kuttaka, Bhavana and Cakravala
  • K. Ramasubramanian and M. D. Srinivas -- Development of calculus in India
  • P. P. Divakaran -- Notes on Yuktibhasa: Recursive methods in Indian mathematics
  • M. S. Sriram -- Planetary and lunar models in the Kerala works, Tantrasangraha (c. 1500) and Ganita Yuktibhasa (c. 1530)
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