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Ancient Egyptian and Mesopotamian/Babylonian mathematics were further developed by Greek and Hellenistic mathematicians, with Egypt as the center of Hellenistic learning.
In turn, Hellenistic and Indian mathematics were further developed and greatly expanded by Arabic and Islamic mathematicians, with Iraq/Mesopotamia as the center of Islamic learning.
of sequences of prime numbers and of Ancient Egyptian multiplication.
The Ishango bone consists of a series of tally marks carved in three columns running the length of the bone.
The earliest traces of the Babylonian numerals also date back to this period.
The Old Babylonian period is the period to which most of the clay tablets on Babylonian mathematics belong, which is why the mathematics of Mesopotamia is commonly known as Babylonian mathematics.
1900 BC), the Moscow Mathematical Papyrus (Egyptian mathematics ca.
Many Greek and Arabic texts on mathematics were eventually translated into Latin in medieval Europe and further developed there.
A striking feature in the history of ancient and medieval mathematics is that bursts of mathematical development were sometimes followed by centuries of stagnation.
Common interpretations are that the Ishango bone shows either the earliest known demonstration of sequences of prime numbers In the book How Mathematics Happened: The First 50,000 Years, Peter Rudman argues that the development of the concept of prime numbers could only have come about after the concept of division, which he dates to after 10,000 BC, with prime numbers probably not being understood until about 500 BC.
He also writes that "no attempt has been made to explain why a tally of something should exhibit multiples of two, prime numbers between 10 and 20, and some numbers that are almost multiples of 10." The Ishango bone, according to scholar Alexander Marshack, may have influenced the later development of mathematics in Egypt as, like some entries on the Ishango bone, Egyptian arithmetic also made use of multiplication by 2; this, however, is disputed.