Posts from the ‘Mathematics in ancient India’ Category

The Fantastic Four

The Fantastic Four – a 4-day workshop on Mathematics for anyone of 7th grade and above in Matunga, Mumbai in April on 4 weekends organised by Eureka’s world and School of Vedic Maths. This is the first of its kind of workshops happening in Mumbai on Mathematics.

For enquiries and registrations, call up the numbers on the flyer or visit

Hurry! Limited seats per workshop!




Vedic Mathrix 2014, a 5-day residential camp on Indian Mathematics

Vedic Mathrix 2014

For Registrations, visit

Algebraic identities on Squaring

Have you ever thought why is (a+b)^2 = a^2 + 2ab + b^2? If not, then here’s a presentation why it is so. Similarly, why (a-b)^2 = a^2 – 2ab + b^2

These algebraic identities were given by Indian mathematician Bhaskaracharya-II in the 12th Cent. in his text Lilavati. He gave two more interesting ways of squaring which are Squaring #3 & Squaring #4

The above given links are a few ways of doing squaring mentally. Learn them and enjoy mental squaring!

Multiplication in Lilavati

Bhaskaracharya-II (1114 – 1193 CE) was one of the greatest Mathematicians that India has every produced. One of his treatises was ‘Lilavati‘ where he discusses various topics of mathematics. Below are a few links where we have made a presentation of different ways of multiplication discussed in Lilavati. Learn and Enjoy!

Multiplication #1

Multiplication #2

Multiplication #3

Multiplication #4

Development of Mathematics in India

The birth of Mathematics in India can be traced back to the Vedas. Vedas are the storehouses of knowledge in India that contains knowledge on different sciences, mathematics, philosophy, and other subjects. Mathematical parts covered in the Vedic literature include topics like number systems, arithmetic, geometry, progression and astronomy.


The Vedas are not books written by any single author; rather it is a collection of all the knowledge that was revealed to different Rishis (seers) during their heights of contemplation and meditation. Initially, the knowledge was not available in a book-form; it was passed on from generation to the generation by word of mouth from the teacher to the student. Somewhere back in history, sage Vyasa (a great seer and visionary) took up the task to compile all the existing knowledge into four volumes – Rgveda, Yajurveda, Samaveda and Atharvaveda. The exact date of the Vedas is not known. Historians have tried giving rough estimates but it differs in view among different persons.


To study the Vedas, study of Vedangas (Veda + Anga, Anga means ‘parts of the body’) was necessary. Vedangas can be classified into six branches viz., Shiksha (phonetics), Kalpam (rituals), Vyakaranam (grammar),Chandas (Prosody), Niruktam (Etymology) and Jyotisham (Astronomy). Among these, knowledge of mathematics was covered mainly in Kalpam & Jyotisham, and also to some extent in Chandas.


Kalpam was further subdivided into four:

  1. Srauta Sutras – dealing with rituals such as Yagas & Yagnas (sacrifices)
  2. Grihya Sutras – rituals to be observed by a householder.
  3. Dharma Sutras – pertaining to law and order
  4. Sulva Sutras – dealing with guidelines of preparation of sacrificial altars (homa kundas) which also happen to be the most ancient treatises available on Geometry.

Jyotisham covered the science of astronomy (not astrology which came much later) which included mathematics. The birth of trigonometry and calculus was mainly through Jyotisham.


Mathematics (Ganitam) was never a different branch of science. It got developed as a different branch of study much later mainly from the knowledge in Sulva Sutras and Jyotisham. The ancient Indian mathematicians from the time of Aryabhatta-I (476-550 CE), gradually divided mathematics further into various branches like Arithmetic, Algebra, Trigonometry, Combinatorics, Astronomy, etc. in their treatises.

Spokes of the wheel acts as a sun dial to show exact time. Sun dials was an early development in India. The above sun dial is from the Konark Sun temple.