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Encyclopedia > Zu Chongzhi

Zu Chongzhi (Traditional Chinese: 祖沖之; Simplified Chinese: 祖冲之; Hanyu Pinyin: Zǔ Chōngzhī; Wade-Giles: Tsu Ch'ung-chih, 429500), courtesy name Wenyuan (文遠), was a prominent Chinese mathematician and astronomer during the Liu Song and Southern Qi Dynasties. Traditional Chinese characters refers to one of two standard sets of printed Chinese characters. ... Simplified Chinese character (Simplified Chinese: or ; Traditional Chinese: or ; pinyin: or ) is one of two standard sets of Chinese characters of printed contemporary Chinese written language, simplified from traditional Chinese by the Peoples Republic of China in an attempt to promote literacy. ... Pinyin (拼音, Pīnyīn) literally means join (together) sounds (a less literal translation being phoneticize, spell or transcription) in Chinese and usually refers to Hànyǔ Pīnyīn (汉语拼音, literal meaning: Han language pinyin), which is a system of... Wade-Giles, sometimes abbreviated Wade, is a Romanization (phonetic notation and transliteration) system for the Chinese language based on Mandarin. ... I am an idiot Theodosius II starts the reform of Roman law. ... Events Possible date for the Battle of Mons Badonicus: Romano-British and Celts defeat an Anglo-Saxon army that may have been led by the bretwalda Aelle of Sussex (approximate date; suggested dates range from 490 to 510) Note: This battle may have influenced the legend of King Arthur. ... Cha can also refer to a Latin American dance, also called the Cha-cha-cha. ... Mathematicians by letter: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z Requested mathematicians articles Lists of mathematicians (by country, etc. ... Famous astronomers and astrophysicists include: Contents: Top - 0–9 A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z [edit] A Marc Aaronson (USA, 1950 – 1987) George Ogden Abell (USA, 1927 – 1983) Antonio Abetti...   The Song Dynasty (宋朝, previous spelling Sung) (420-479) was first of the four Southern Dynasties in China, followed by the Qi Dynasty. ... The Southern Qi Dynasty 齊朝 (479-502) was the second of the Southern dynasties in China, followed by the Liang Dynasty. ...

Contents

Life and works

Zu Chongzhi's ancestry was from modern Baoding, Hebei. To flee from the ravages of war, Zu's grandfather Zu Chang moved to the Yangtze, as part of the massive population movement during the Eastern Jin. Zu Chang (祖昌) at one point held the position of "Minister of Great Works" (大匠卿) within the Liu Song and was in charge of government construction projects. Zu's father, Zu Shuo (祖朔) also served the court and was greatly respected for his erudition. Baoding prefecture in Hebei province Baoding (Chinese: ; pinyin: ) is a prefecture-level city in Hebei province, China. ... Length 6,380 km Elevation of the source  ? m Average discharge 31,900 m³/s Area watershed 1,800,000 km² Origin Qinghai Province and Tibet Mouth East China Sea Basin countries China The Chang Jiang (Simplified Chinese: 长江; Traditional Chinese: 長江; pinyin: Cháng Jiāng... The Jìn Dynasty (Simplified Chinese: ; Traditional Chinese: ; Pinyin: ; 265–420), one of the Six Dynasties, followed the Three Kingdoms period and preceded the Southern and Northern Dynasties in China. ...


Zu was born in Jiankang. His family had historically been involved in astronomy research, and from childhood Zu was exposed to both astronomy and mathematics. When he was only a youth his talent earned him much repute. When Emperor Xiaowu of Liu Song heard of him, he was sent to an Academy, the Hualin Xuesheng (華林學省), and later at the Imperial Nanjing University (Zongmingguan) to perform research. In 461 in Nanxu (today Zhenjiang, Jiangsu), he was engaged in work at the office of the local governor. Jiankang (建康城 in pinyin: Jiànkāng chéng), formerly known as Jianye (建業 Jiànyè) until Eastern Jin Dynasty (317 - 420), is an ancient city in China, located west of present-day Nanjing, in south Jiangning County (江寧縣 Jiāngníng Xi... Emperor Xiaowu of Liu Song ((劉)宋孝武帝) (430-464), personal name Liu Jun (劉駿), courtesy name Xiulong (休龍), nickname Daomin (道民), was an emperor of the Chinese dynasty Liu Song. ... Events August 2 - Majorian resigns as Western Roman Emperor; shortly afterwards Libius Severus is declared western Roman emperor by Ricimer November 19 - Hilarius succeeds Leo as Pope Saint Patrick returns to Ireland as a Christian missionary. ... Zhenjiang (Simplified Chinese: 镇江; Traditional Chinese: 鎮江; pinyin: Zhènjiāng; Wade-Giles: Chen-chiang) is a prefecture-level city in the southwestern Jiangsu province, Peoples Republic of China. ...


His mathematical achievements included:

  • the Daming calendar (大明曆) introduced by him in 465.
  • distingushing the Sidereal Year and the Tropical Year, and he measured 45 years and 11 months per degree between those two, and today we know the difference is 70.7 years per degree.
  • calculating one year as 365.24281481 days, which is very close to 365.24219878 days as we know today.
  • calculating the number of overlaps between sun and moon as 27.21223, which is very close to 27.21222 as we know today; using this number he successfully predicted an eclipse four times during 23 years (from 436 to 459).
  • calculating the Jupiter year as about 11.858 Earth years, which is very close to 11.862 as we know of today.
  • deriving two approximations of pi, which held as the most accurate approximation for π for over nine hundred years. His best approximation was between 3.1415926 and 3.1415927, with 355113 (密率, Milu, detailed approximation) and 227 (約率, Yuelu, rough approximation) being the other notable approximations. He obtained the result by approximating a circle with a 12,288 sided polygon. This was an impressive feat for the time, especially considering that the only device he used for recording intermediate results were merely a pile of wooden sticks laid out in certain patterns. No one discovered more of pi until 900 years later.
  • finding the volume of a sphere as being 4πr3/3, where r is radius.
  • discovering the Cavalieri's principle, 1000 years before Bonaventura Cavalieri in the West.

Events Song Qian Fei Di, then Song Ming Di become ruler of the Song Dynasty in China. ... When a circles diameter is 1, its circumference is Ï€. The mathematical constant Ï€ is an irrational real number, approximately equal to 3. ... Milü (355⁄113) (Chinese: ; pinyin: mì lÇœ; literally detailed (approximation) ratio), also known as Zulü (Zus ratio),[1] roughly 3. ... Proofs of the famous mathematical result that the rational number 22⁄7 is greater than Ï€ date back to antiquity. ... Bonaventura Cavalieri (1598–1647) was an Italian mathematician whose legacy includes early work on logarithms and geometry, including the rule known today as Cavalieris principle. ... Coins illustrating Cavalieris principle Bonaventura Francesco Cavalieri (in Latin, Cavalerius) (1598–November 30, 1647) was an Italian mathematician best known today for Cavalieris principle, which states that the volumes of two objects are equal if the areas of corresponding cross-sections are in all cases equal. ...

The South Pointing Chariot

The South Pointing Chariot device was first invented by the Chinese mechanical engineer Ma Jun (c. 200-265 AD). It was a wheeled vehicle that incorporated an early use of differential gears to operate a fixed figurine that would constantly point south, hence enabling one to accurately measure their directional bearings. Hence, this was achieved not by magnetics (like in a compass), but through intricate mechanics, the same design that allows equal amounts of torque applied to wheels rotating at different speeds for the modern automobile. After the Three Kingdoms period, the device fell out of use temporarily. However, it was Zu Chongzhi who successfully re-invented it in 478 AD, as described in the texts fo the Song Shu (c. 500 AD) and the Nan Chi Shu, with a passage from the latter below: South Pointing Chariot (replica) Supposedly invented sometime around 2600BC in China by the Yellow Emperor Huang Di, the South Pointing Chariot (Zhi Nan Ju 指南車) is widely regarded as the most complex geared mechanism of the ancient Chinese civilization. ... For other uses, see number 200. ... Events Wei Yuandi abdicates, end of the China. ... In an automobile and other four-wheeled vehicles, a differential is a device, usually consisting of gears, that allows each of the driving wheels to rotate at different speeds, while supplying equal torque to each of them. ... In physics, magnetism is a phenomenon by which materials exert an attractive or repulsive force on other materials. ... Compass in a wooden box A compass (or mariners compass) is a navigational instrument for finding directions on the Earth. ... Karl Benzs Velo model (1894) - entered into the first automobile race An automobile or motor car (usually shortened to just car) is a wheeled passenger vehicle that carries its own motor. ... The Three Kingdoms period (Traditional Chinese: ; Simplified Chinese: ; pinyin: ) is a period in the history of China, part of an era of disunity called the Six Dynasties. ...

When Emperor Wu of Liu Song subdued Guanzhong he obtained the south-pointing carriage of Yao Xing, but it was only the shell with no machinery inside. Whenever it moved it had to have a man inside to turn (the figure). In the Sheng-Ming reign period, Gao Di commissioned Zi Zu Chongzhi to reconstruct it according to the ancient rules. He accordingly made new machinery of bronze, which would turn round about without a hitch and indicate the direction with uniformity. Since Ma Jun's time such a thing had not been.[1] Emperor Wu of (Liu) Song ((劉)宋武帝) (363-422), personal name Liu Yu (劉裕), courtesy name Dexing (德興), nickname Jinu (寄奴), was the founding emperor of the Chinese dynasty Liu Song. ... Location within China Guangzhou is the capital of Guangdong Province in southern China. ...

Named for him

  • The lunar crater Tsu Chung-Chi
  • 1888 Zu Chong-Zhi is the name of asteroid 1964 VO1.

Tsu Chung-Chi is a relatively small lunar impact crater on the Moons far side. ... 253 Mathilde, a C-type asteroid. ...

See also

It has been suggested that this article be split into multiple articles accessible from a disambiguation page. ... Mathematicians by letter: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z Requested mathematicians articles Lists of mathematicians (by country, etc. ... Famous astronomers and astrophysicists include: Contents: Top - 0–9 A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z [edit] A Marc Aaronson (USA, 1950 – 1987) George Ogden Abell (USA, 1927 – 1983) Antonio Abetti...

Notes

  1. ^ Needham, Volume 4, Part 2, 289.

References

  • Needham, Joseph (1986). Science and Civilization in China: Volume 4, Part 2. Taipei: Caves Books, Ltd.
  • Du, Shiran and He, Shaogeng, "Zu Chongzhi". Encyclopedia of China (Mathematics Edition), 1st ed.

The Encyclopedia of China (Chinese: ) is the first large-scale encyclopedia in the Chinese language in the modern era. ...

Further reading

  • Needham, Joseph (1986). Science and Civilization in China: Volume 3, Mathematics and the Sciences of the Heavens and the Earth. Taipei: Caves Books, Ltd.

External links

  • Encyclopedia Britannica's description of Zu Chongzhi
  • Zu Chongzhi at Chinaculture.org
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  Results from FactBites:
 
Zu Chongzhi (421 words)
Zu Chongzhi (425-500), born in Fanyang (now Laiyuan County in Hebei Province), was a great mathematician and astronomer during the Northern and Southern Dynasty (220-581).
Zu Chongzhi's main contribution to math is the computation of pi.
Zu Chongzhi and his son, Zu Geng, also managed to put forward the formula for computation of the volume of a sphere.
China Corner Forum: Zu Chongzhi the Mathematician and Astrono (452 words)
Zu Chongzhi was born into an extremely talented family with successive generations being astronomer and with special interests in calander and mathematics.
Zu Chongzhi, in the family tradition, was taught a variety of skills as he grew up, especially the mathematical and astronomical skills and the science of the calendar in particular.
Zu Chongzhi devised a precise method of calculate and finally found the precise value of the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter is as 355 to 113.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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