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TAKAKAZU SEKI KOWA & AIDA YASUAKI

The most distinguished Japanese mathematician of the Tokugawa Shogunate (1603-1867) era and perhaps of a time was Takakazu Seki Kowa (!arch 16"#$ % &cto'er #"( 1708)) Aida Yasuaki (*e'ruar+ 10( 17"7 % &cto'er #6( 1817) was one of the most pro ific mathematicians of his time) This entr+ is not on + the stories of these two( 'ut a so a 'rief description of the ear + de,e opment Takakazu Seki Kowa

of Japanese mathematics) Japan did not 'egin its inte ectua de,e opment unti -uddhist missionaries arri,ed from .hina around /)0) 100) Traditiona + it is 'e ie,ed that Japan had a crude s+stem of numeration dating from 600 -.2 and that ear + in its e3istence it produced or 'orrowed a s+stem of measures and a ca endar) Aida Ysuaki 0uring the 8th centur+ .2( man+ of the .hinese mathematica arts were introduced into Japan) Japanese mathematicians imitated the work of .hinese scho ars and when a uni,ersit+ s+stem was esta' ished in Japan( nine .hinese 'ooks were made the 'asis of the mathematica curricu um) .hinese mathematics and Japanese mathematics used the same anguage( not 4ust the same .hinese characters) Thus if Japanese mathematicians ac5uired .hinese mathematica 'ooks the+ cou d ha,e easi + understood .hinese mathematica ideas)

0uring the Tokugawa Shogunate( Japan gradua + cut itse f off from the western wor d( with this se fimposed nationa iso ation (sakoku) officia + decreed in 1636) .iti7ens were for'idden to ea,e the Japanese is es( foreign 'ooks were 'anned and foreign missionaries and their con,erts were persecuted)

i.e the .erthe ess( during the ate 17th centur+( the countr+ e3perienced a cu tura renaissance simi ar to the one that had occurred in the pre.owe.era names( inc uding a iases and pennames( used officia +( whi e their rea names were used on + in the fami +) Takaka7u Seki used the name Seki =owa when he pu' ished 'ooks) /s his fame de.er( a'out nine hundred of these sur.o umes of so ids) and arithmetic( ga.e op into a high art form( as did No and Kabuki theater) Japanese mathematicians created their own mathematica wor d( and earned peop e of a c asses( from farmers to samurai( produced theorems in 2uc idean geometr+) !ost of the theorems and answers to pro' ems were presented as 'eautifu + co ored drawings on wooden pane s ca ed sangaku( itera + meaning 9mathematica ta' et(: which were hung under the roofs of a shrine or a temp e): The sangaku( 'oth mathematics and art( were 'eautifu in their simp icit+) !an+ of these were ost during the moderni7ation period of the !ei4i re.ed and can 'e seen nowada+s in rura Japan) !an+ mathematicians contri'uted significant + to Japanese mathematics in this period) /mong these are !<ri =am'ei Shige+oshi and his pupi s >oshida Schichi'ei =<+?( a so known as !itsu+oshi( who wrote Jinkō-ki (9Sma num'er( arge num'er( treatise:)( the first great Japanese arithmetica work and @mamura .e oped( Japanese mathematicians knew him on + through his works( so Takaka7u Seki 'ecame known as Seki =owa) Chen he was nine a ser.oted to stereometr+ (the art of determining the dimensions and .hish<( who in his 'ook Jugai-roku( de.ant introduced Seki to mathematics and from then on this chi d prodig+ taught .a ue of A as 3)16#) Takaka7u Seki was 'orn to a samurai warrior fami + at *u4ioka in Bunma prefecture( 'ut at an ear + age a no' e fami + of the name Seki Boro7a+emon adopted him) @n 2astern /sian countries( adu ts had se.ious centur+ in 2urope) This period( known as genroku( saw haiku poetr+ de.o ution) .8e.

e is genera + considered to 'e the founder of Japanese mathematics) Dnder SekiEs inf uence a Japanese schoo of mathematics was created) -ecause of the secrec+ and ri.a r+ among Japanese schoo s it is difficu t to identif+ a of SekiEs mathematica contri'utions) @t is known that he introduced a ge'raic notations( in.e 'een ost) -ecause he was a descendent of the samurai c ass( Seki was appointed e3aminer of accounts for the Ford of =oshu( and when the atter 'ecame Shogun( Seki 'ecame Shogunate samurai) @n 170" Seki was made the master of ceremonies in the ShogunEs househo d) Seki is gi.e s+stems of inear e5uations and e.idence that he was in an+ wa+ inf uenced '+ it) Dnfortunate +( if the num'er of manuscripts attri'uted to Seki =owa is accurate( then most of these ha.ed on his tom'stone) .himse f mathematics) Seki is known to ha.ented determinants to so .i.e sur.eries in ca cu us) .e created a new mathematica notation s+stem( which he used to determine man+ of the theorems and theories that were a read+ known in Cestern mathematics) / though he anticipated man+ of the disco.en much credit for the socia reform that he ped de.e co ected mathematics 'ooks from 'oth the .e op the stud+ of mathematics in Japan and make it wide + accessi' e) /ida >asuaki produced as man+ as fift+ to si3t+ works a +ear( of which near + #000 ha.hinese and Japanese cu tures and e.ident + made ma4or disco.e was a distinguished teacher of traditiona mathematics( which is ca ed 9wasan: (o d Japanese !athematics) in order to distinguish it from 9+osan: (western mathematics)) >asuaki studied under the mathematician >asu+uki &ka7aki) @n 1766( /ida went to 2do (now Tok+o) to work for the shogunate of Tokugawa @eharu) The shogunate( which asted from 116# to 1867( was e3treme + powerfu ( contro ing the emperor( administering the ands and making foreign po ic+) /ida was emp o+ed as a .ed) .eries of Cestern mathematics( there is no e.entua + 'ecame so recogni7ed as a mathematica e3pert that he was ca ed Sansei (9The /rithmetica Sage:)( a tit e car.

e mathematics 'e rep aced '+ +osan) Quotation of the DayH 9I the Japanese mathematics did not e3ist as a science 'ut as art) &n that .i engineer( 'ut his dream was to 'ecome the 'est mathematician in Japan) Through a series of unfortunate e.ents >asuaki earned the animosit+ of Sadasuke *u4ita( one of JapanEs eading mathematicians) @n 1781( *u4ita pu' ished a mathematica work Seiyo sampo( upon which his reputation rested) /ida wrote Kaisei sampo( a work 'ased on that of *u4ita( 'ut critica of it( perhaps in reta iation for *u4ita pointing out errors in ta' ets inscri'ed with mathematica pro' ems that /ida had donated to a re igious temp e) This fanned the f ame of the feud 'etween the two mathematicians( which soon in.ed man+ others( who took sides in the dispute) Chen the shogun Tokugawa @eharu died in 1786( to 'e succeeded '+ Tokugawa @enari( /ida ost his position and chose to spend the rest of his ife working on his mathematics) @n 1788( he compi ed a 'ook of geometr+ pro' ems( ca ed Sampo tensi shinan) @n it he e3p ained the use of a ge'raic e3pressions and the construction of e5uations( and contri'uted to num'er theor+) /ida was the founder of the Saijo schoo ( one of the most acti.o .ed so .ci.e groups in the mathematica sciences in the atter ha f of the 2do period) @n 1816( =a7u Catana'e edited and pu' ished the mathematica 'ook Kinsensanpo( in honor of his master /ida >asuaki) @t inc uded much of the traditiona mathematics of the period that in.ing comp icated geometrica pro' ems featuring chains of circ es) 0uring the 16th centur+ the wasan was gradua + supp anted '+ +osan) This transformation introduced h+'rid manuscripts( written in Kambun with Cestern mathematica notation) Chen .ernment ordered that the stud+ of nati.o .ommander Gerr+ opened Japan to the Cest in 1867( c ose + fo owed '+ the co apse of the Tokugawa shogunate( the new go.

account e.er+thing studied in Japan had 'orne the character of specia t+( acking in genera it+) -ut the Japanese were '+ no means wanting in the scientific spiritJ the+ were on the contrar+ endowed strong + with the 7ea ous +earning after truth and know edge which pre.ai ed throughout the who e histor+ of the Japanese mathematics): % >oshio !ikami .