Q:

Who invented the quadratic equation?

A:

Babylonian mathematicians as early as the Sumerian Ur III period (21st to 20th century B.C.) used geometric methods to solve second-degree problems. Similar geometric methods solved quadratic equations in later Babylonia, Egypt, Greece, China, and India. Indian mathematician Brahmagupta (597-668 C.E.) was the first to give an explicit solution.

Ancient Babylonians understood second-degree equations as geometric problems of sides and areas of rectangles and squares. The equation can be geometrically stated as saying that if a rectangle with sides of the length s and f/2 * s is removed from a rectangle with sides p and s, then the remainder is a rectangle of given area B. Euclid summarized these geometric solutions in Book II of the Elements where he represented such problems by a combination of rectangles and lines.

Brahmagupta of India was instrumental in understanding that numbers are abstract concepts which can be zero or negative. He pointed out that quadratic equations can have two possible solutions, one of which can be negative. He derived algebraic solutions to quadratic equations and went several steps further by solving systems of equations and quadratic equations with two unknowns. The latter was not considered by European mathematicians until more than a millennium later.


Is this answer helpful?

Similar Questions

  • Q:

    What does quadratic mean?

    A:

    According to Dictionary.com, the word "quadratic" is derived from the Latin word "quadratus" and means "square." In math, a quadratic refers to a polynomial where the highest degree of the term is two, which means the largest term in the polynomial is squared or raised to the second power.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is an equation?

    A:

    An equation is a statement declaring that two values are equal. It has an equals sign and expressions on the left and right of the equals sign; the expression on the left and the right are equal.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How do you graph quadratic equations?

    A:

    The simplest way to graph a quadratic equation is to substitute an array of values for x in the equation and solve for y in each case to obtain several (x,y) coordinates. After obtaining the coordinates, they can be plotted on graph paper along the x-y axis to form a parabolic curve that is typical of a quadratic equation.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the definition of "quadratic function"?

    A:

    A quadratic function is a function of the form f(x) = ax^2 + bx + c where a, b and c are constants. Part of the definition of a quadratic function is that a is not equal to zero, although b and c can equal zero.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore