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Aryabhatta (476-550 A.D.

) was born in Patliputra in Magadha, modern


Patna in Bihar. Many are of the view that he was born in the south of
India especially Kerala and lived in Magadha at the time of the Gupta
rulers; time which is known as the golden age of India. There is no
evidence that he was born outside Patliputra and traveled to Magadha,
the centre of education and learning for his studies where he even set
up a coaching centre. His first name "Arya" is hardly a south Indian
name while "Bhatt" (or Bhatta) is a typical north Indian name even
found today specially among the "Bania" (or trader) community.

Whatever this origin, it cannot be argued that he lived in Patliputra


where he wrote his famous treatise the "Aryabhatta-siddhanta" but
more famously the "Aryabhatiya", the only work to have survived. It
contains mathematical and astronomical theories that have been
revealed to be quite accurate in modern mathematics. For instance he
wrote that if 4 is added to 100 and then multiplied by 8 then added to
62,000 then divided by 20,000 the answer will be equal to the
circumference of a circle of diameter twenty thousand. This calculates
to 3.1416 close to the actual value Pi (3.14159). But his greatest
contribution has to be zero. His other works include algebra,
arithmetic, trigonometry, quadratic equations and the sine table.

He already knew that the earth spins on its axis, the earth moves
round the sun and the moon rotates round the earth. He talks about
the position of the planets in relation to its movement around the sun.
He refers to the light of the planets and the moon as reflection from
the sun. He goes as far as to explain the eclipse of the moon and the
sun, day and night, the contours of the earth, the length of the year
exactly as 365 days.
He even computed the circumference of the earth as 24835 miles
which is close to modern day calculation of 24900 miles.

This remarkable man was a genius and continues to baffle many


mathematicians of today. His works was then later adopted by the
Greeks and then the Arabs.

Aryabhatta I, born 476 A.D in Patliputra in Magadha is now modern Patna in Bihar.
There are several tales of claim for his origins. Many believe that he was born in the
south of India around the Kerala region and lived in Magadha at the time of the Gupta
rulers; time which is known as the golden age of India. There is no evidence that he was
born outside Patliputra and traveled to Magadha, the centre of instruction, culture and
knowledge for his studies where he even set up a coaching institute. His first name
"Arya" is not a south Indian name while "Bhatt" (or sometimes Bhatta) is a typical north
Indian name. The name is popular even today in India especially among the trader
community of north India.
Aryabhatta - Astronomer, Mathematician, Scientist

Hi,

The post on Thoppukaranam alias "Super Brain Yoga" seems to have garnered
a lot of interest. These days your blog is averaging 50+ hits a day! Sadly, this
also goes on to show that when our ancient practices are marketed by the west,
they receive a tremendous response... But my belief is that if people are going
to be benefited by it, there is no harm in whichever method the publicity
comes...

With this post I am starting a series on possibly ancient world's greatest


mathematician and astronomer, Aryabhatta.

Aryabhatta was born around 475 AD, and had already published his most
significant work, "Aryabhatiyam", by the age of 23.

Though Aryabhatta has made innumerous contributions to both mathematics


and astronomy, in this post, I would like to specifically elucidate how he was the
first person to identify the irrationality of possibly the most enchanting and
intriguing of numbers, Pi.

Aryabhatiyam is also referred to as Ashtamkara and also as Aryashastasashta


(108 verses), but is now popularly called Aryabhatiyam. The Sanskirt verse
describing Pi is given below:

The English interpretation of the above Shloka would be:

Add 4 to 100, multiply by 8, then add 62000, then divide by 20000. The result is
"approximately" circumference of a circle of diameter 20000.

The answer of the above calculation is 62832/20000 = 3.1416.

By using the word "Asanna" (last word in the Sanskrit verse), Aryabhatta clearly
states that the value so found is not exact, but an "approximate" one,
something that was "approaching" the exact value. So he is referring to it being
irrational.

This is quite a significant contribution, as it was not until the 17th century that
Pi was proved to be irrational in Europe.

Keep watching out in the forthcoming weeks for more such interesting stuff on
Aryabhatta...