In details

The History of Business and Financial Mathematics (part 4)


IV-) The First Arithmetic

As a result of the interest in education and the enormous growth of commercial activity in the Renaissance, many popular arithmetic texts began to appear. Three hundred of these books were printed in Europe before the seventeenth century. These works were of two types, primarily those written in Latin by classically educated intellectuals, often linked to church schools, and others written in the vernacular by practical teachers interested in preparing young people for business careers.
The oldest printed arithmetic is the anonymous and now extremely rare Treviso Arithmetic, published in 1478 in the city of Treviso. It is a widely commercial arithmetic, dedicated to explaining the writing of numbers, making calculations with them, and containing applications involving societies and barter. Like the early 14th century "algorithms," it also includes recreational issues. It was the first math book to be printed in the western world.

Far more influential in Italy than Treviso's arithmetic was the commercial arithmetic written by Piero Borghi. This highly useful work was published in Venice in 1484 and reached at least seventeen editions, the last of 1557. In 1491 a less important arithmetic by Filippo Calandri was published in Florence, but interesting to us because it contains the first example. print of the modern process of division and also the first illustrated problems to appear in Italy.


Work provided by Jean Piton Gonçalves

Bibliography:

Robert, Jozsef - The Origin of Money, Global Publisher - 1982

Ifrah, Georges - Universal History of Numerals, Ed. New Frontier

Mattos, Antônio Carlos M. - The Mathematical Model of Interest. A Systemic Approach, Ed Vozes - Petrópolis

Smith, D.E. - History of Mathematics - Dover Publications, INC - New York

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