Revistes Catalanes amb Accés Obert (RACO)

The History of algebra in Italy in the 14th and 15th centuries : some remarks on recent historiography

Raffaella Franci


The solution of the algebraic equations of third and fourth degree by Italian
algebraists in the first half of the 16th century is considered the beginning of the development
of modern mathematics. These results have their roots in Italian vernacular algebra
that was taught in Abbacus School and written in a chapter of abbacus treatises
since the beginning of the 14thcentury. In recent years many of these treatises has
been published and studied. Particular attention has been paid to the origins of Italian
vernacular algebra that does not seem linked to al-Khwarizmis and Fibonaccis tradition.
In this paper we make a survey of the main 14th century treatises and give some
contribution to the problem of the origins.

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