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Euclid is one of the most influential and best read mathematicians of all time His prize work Elements was the textbook of elementary geometry and logic up to the early twentieth century For his work in the field he is known as the father of geometry and is considered one of the great Greek mathematicians Very little is known about the life of Euclid Both the dates and places of his birth and death are unknown The best estimation is that he was born around 325 BC and died around 265 BC It is believed that he was educated at Platos academy in Athens and stayed there until he was invited by Ptolemy I to teach at his newly founded university in Alexandria There Euclid founded the school of mathematics and remained there for the rest of his life As a teacher he was probably one of the mentors to Archimedes Personally all accounts of Euclid describe him as a kind fair patient man who quickly helped and praised the works of others However this did not stop him from engaging in sarcasm One story relates that one of his students complained that he had no use for any of the mathematics he was learning Euclid quickly called to his slave to give the boy a coin because he must make gain out of what he learns Another story relates that Ptolemy asked the mathematician if there was some easier way to learn geometry than by learning all the theorems Euclid replied There is no royal road to geometry and sent the king to study Euclids fame comes from his writings especially his masterpiece Elements This 13-volume work is a compilation of Greek mathematics and geometry It is unknown how much if any of the work included in Elements is Euclids original work many of the theorems found can be traced to previous thinkers including Euxodus Thales Hippocrates and Pythagoras However the format of Elements
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