*Encyclopedia of World Biography*. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.

This section contains 1,261 words(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page) |

*Encyclopedia of World Biography* on Euclid

The Greek mathematician Euclid (active 300 BC) wrote the *Elements,* a collection of geometrical theorems. The oldest extant major mathematical work in the Western world, it set a standard for logical exposition for over 2,000 years.

Virtually nothing is known of Euclid personally. It is not even known for certain whether he was a creative mathematician himself or was simply good at compiling the work of others. Most of the information about Euclid comes from Proclus, a 5th-century-AD. Greek scholar. Because Archimedes refers to Euclid and Archimedes lived immediately after the time of Ptolemy I, King of Egypt (ca. 306-283 BC), Proclus concludes they were contemporaries. Euclid's mathematical education may well have been obtained from Plato's pupils in Athens, since it was there that most of the earlier mathematicians upon whose work the *Elements* is based had studied and taught.

No earlier writings comparable to the *Elements* of Euclid have survived...

This section contains 1,261 words(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page) |