It is frequently noted by historians of numbers that early counting systems often relied on the three-patterned concept of "One- Two- Many" to describe counting limits. In other words, in their own language equivalent way, early peoples had a word to describe the quantities of one and two, but any quantity beyond this point was simply denoted as "Many". As an extension to this insight, it can also be noted that early counting systems appear to have had limits at the numerals 2, 3, and 4. References to counting limits beyond these three indices do not appear to prevail as consistently in the historical record.What a great job to be a historian of numbers! Here's the historical progression of the numeral 3 coming to look like our lovely little 3?
February 10, 2008
Have you ever dreamed about looking things up in Wikipedia? I have. What were you looking up? I was looking up the number 3. Did you know that Wikipedia has long, elaborate entries on particular numbers. Here's 3. Excerpt: