Number Word EtymologiesDate: 05/03/2001 at 15:48:30 From: Stephanie Alvarez Subject: Algebra Who made up the names for numbers? Like 1 = one, 2 = two, 3 = three. Date: 05/04/2001 at 12:20:00 From: Doctor Peterson Subject: Re: Algebra Hi, Stephanie. Like all the other basic words in our language, these go back a long time, into the ancestral languages of English. You can see some of the relationships among European languages by comparing the number words given here: Numbers in Indo-European Languages http://www.zompist.com/euro.htm You'll see that most of the numbers can be traced back at least to what is called Proto-Indo-European. The forms given there (which are assumed, since the language was not written) are one two three four five six seven eight nine ten oynos duwo: treyes kwetwores penkwe sweks septm okto: newn dekm You can see that some number names have changed more than others. The study of etymology (history of words) is fascinating and complex; you might want to find some good library books on the subject. - Doctor Peterson, The Math Forum http://mathforum.org/dr.math/ |
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