Luca Pacioli

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Pacioli, Luca


Born circa 1445; died after 1509. Italian mathematician; mathematics teacher.

In 1494, Pacioli published Summa de arithmetica, geometria, proportions et proportionalita, a work dealing with arithmetic operations and with algebraic equations and the application of such equations to geometry. Under the influence of his friend Leonardo da Vinci, he spent the years from 1496 to 1499 writing De divina proportione (published 1509). This treatise contains a theory of geometric proportions, notably the rules for the golden section—the division of a line in extreme and mean ratio.


Cantor, M. Vorlesungen über Geschichte der Mathematik, 2nd ed., vol. 2. Leipzig, 1913.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Five centuries later, the influence of this Renaissance Franciscan can be seen throughout financial centers such as New York City, not only in the business and financial institutions, but also at the fabled Metropolitan Museum of Art, where the ubiquitous "M" logo of the museum was taken from Pacioli's De Divina Proportione, and even at the chessboards etched into the concrete tables in Washington Square Park, where people play a version of the ancient game that was nudged into its more modern form with the help of the monk/mathematician and, possibly, his painter/inventor cohort.
And subsequent systems in common use--particularly those created by Albrecht Durer and Geofrey Tory--evolved from my work in De Divina Proportione.
P: I was tutoring Leonardo while writing De Divina Proportione and observing his own artistic genius while he worked on a mural on the north wall of the refectory of Santa Maria della Grazie, a Dominican cloister not far from the Court of Milan.
Leonardo later illustrated Fra Luca Pacioli's book "Divina Proportione" all about the way this number links to nature.
The third conforms to the project's 'universal' spirit: 'Leonardo and the Mathematical Arts' at the Museum of the History of Science will present the diagrams that Leonado drew for De Divina Proportione by fellow Milanese courtier Luca Pacioli.
Pacioli's Summa de arithmetica, printed in 1494, may be the most elegant and compendious of all vernacular manuals, while the De Divina Proportione, printed in 1509, applies mathematics to the order underlying the cosmos, with particular emphasis on the Golden Section.
(3) Documented by Fra Luca Pacioli, De Divina Proportione, Venice, 1509, in the dedicatory letter composed on 9 February 1498.