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MA 330W History of Mathematics


This library guide contains resources for the course, MA 330W History of Mathematics, beginning with the Ancients.  You will find information on the most important aspects of mathematics from the beginning of recorded mathematical activity through the development of calculus.

Assignment 1

You should write a short two-page biography on your assigned individual. Include information about early education and background to include interesting information such as:

  • the cultural background (cultural differences could be due to location or time period)
  • contributions to mathematics as well as other field (major works, theorems, etc.)
  • whatever other information you have found that is of interest (anecdotes)

You must supply references on your sources as part of the intent of this exercise is for you to learn to deal with citations. Naturally this biography must be typed (12-point font, double spaced). It is expected that some students will be asked to resubmit this paper.


  • Muhammad ibn Musa Al-Khwarizmi
  • Isaac Barrow
  • Brahmagupta (7th Century)
  • Girolamo Cardano
  • Augustin-Louis Cauchy
  • Rene Descartes
  • Pierre de Fermat
  • Leonardo of Pisa (Fibonacci)
  • Johannes Kepler
  • Umar Khayyami (Khayyam)
  • John Napier
  • Blaise Pascal
  • Nicolo Tartaglia
  • Francois Viete
  • John Wallis