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# When and by whom were the mathematical symbols '=' and 'x' introduced?

Question #29496. Asked by mochyn. (Mar 10 03 8:55 PM)

Tabby Tom

According to the New Shell Book of Firsts:

The equals sign was first used by Robert Record, fellow of All Souls' College, Oxford, in his algebra text 'The Whetstone of Wit', published in London in 1577. He explained that he had chosen this particular symbol because 'no two things can be more equal' than two parallel straight lines.

The multiplication sign (x) was first used by William Oughtred of Albury, Surrey, England, in his 'Clavis Mathematica', published in 1631.

 Mar 10 03, 9:02 PM

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