Diophantus of Alexandria was one of the last (c. 250 AD) great mathematicians of the Hellenistic period. He is often called the “father of algebra.” An entire branch of mathematics is named for him. It was in the margin of his book Arithmetica that Fermat penned his famous note. Today, while looking up some information on…

# Tag: Fermat’s Last Theorem

## Mathematics in novels and Martin Gardner RIP

I always enjoy encountering mathematics in non-mathematical works of fiction. (I posted excerpts from Candide and The Brothers Karamazov last fall.) Here are a few more that I came across recently. The first is in Dashiell Hammett’s 1934 murder mystery The Thin Man. Here is a conversation between private eye Nick Charles and his wife Nora at the…