Led Astray by a Right Triangle: Misconception, Epiphany, and Redemption - References and About the Author

Frank J. Swetz (The Pennsylvania State University)


[1] Bronowski, J. The Ascent of Man, Little, Brown and Company, Boston, 1973, p. 163.

[2] Cullen, C. Astronomy and Mathematics in Ancient China: the Zhou bi suan jing, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2007.

[3] Hart, R. The Chinese Roots of Linear Algebra, The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 2011.

[4] Li, Y. and Du, S. Chinese Mathematics: A Concise History, Oxford University Press, New York, 1987.

[5] Mikami, Y. The Development of Mathematics in China and Japan, 1913: Chelsea Publishing Co. reprint, 1974, pp. 34-36.

[6] Needham, J. Science and Civilization in China, vol. 3, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1959, pp. 22-23.

[7] Plutarch. Septem Sapietium Convivium [Dinner of the Seven Wise Men], Loeb Classical Library, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, 1928, II: pp. 345-349.

[8] Shen, K et al. The Nine Chapters of the Mathematical Art: Companion & Commentary, Oxford University Press New York, 1999.

[9] Smith, D.E. History of Mathematics (2 vols.), 1925: Dover reprint, 1958.

[10] Swetz, F. “Trigonometry Comes Out of the Shadows,” Learn from the Masters, F. Swetz et al (eds.) ,The Mathematical Association of American, Washington, DC. 1995, pp. 57-73.

[11] Swetz, F. The Sea Island Manual: Surveying and Mathematics in Ancient China, The Pennsylvania State University Press, University Park, PA, 1992.

[12] Swetz, F and Kao, T.I. Was Pythagoras Chinese? An Examination of Right Triangle Theory in Ancient China, The Pennsylvania State University Press, University Park, PA, 1977.

[13] van Hée, L. “Le Classique de l’île maritime: Ouvrage chinois de IIIe siècle.” Quellen und Studien zur Geschichte der Mathematik 2, 1932, pp. 255-258.

[14] Wu, W. “Churu xiangbu yuanli [Out-in-complementary principle],” Zhongguo gudai keji chengjiu [Achievements of Ancient Chinese Science and Technology], Institute for History of Natural Sciences, Bejing, 1978.

About the Author

Frank J. Swetz is a founding editor of MAA Convergence. He currently hunts and secures images of "mathematical treasures" for Convergence from libraries and museums both near and far from his home in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. In addition to his publications referenced above and many others over the years, he has most recently authored the book, Mathematical Expeditions: Exploring Word Problems across the Ages (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2012), and edited the collections, The European Mathematical Awakening: A Journey Through the History of Mathematics from 1000 to 1800 (Dover Publications, 2013) and The Search for Certainty: A Journey Through the History of Mathematics from 1800 to 2000 (Dover Publications, 2012).