(ca. 1250 – 1315)

Regarding intellectualism, Zhu Shijie was fluid, thorough and versatile. He is without question one of the greatest mathematicians to come out of China. His exploits on Multivariate Polynomials remain till this day, a glowing firework. The same goes for his methods of solving Linear Equations by reducing the matrix coefficients. For nearly two decades, Zhu traveled far and wide across China and its adjoining territories. In the process he mentored and tutored uncountable scholars, who in turn, helped to advance Chinese mathematics. His famous books: Suanxue Qimeng (An Introduction to Mathematical Studies, published around 1299 for beginners), and the Siyuan Yujian (The True Reflections of the Four Unknowns, published in 1303 for advanced learners), refined and extended the scope of the centuries-long acclaimed Nine Chapters on the Mathematical Art. Both of those books became the-most-sought-after mathematical bestsellers of their generation. Centuries later, several mathematicians, including Blaise Pascal and William Horner, will gain fame just by advancing a few aspects of Zhu Shijie’s mathematical methods. Apart from mentoring scholars during his 20-year sojourns, Zhu succeeded in unifying the traditional math methods of the northern and southern China: by amalgamating the bests of both regions.


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