Golden Section - Research Article from Macmillan Science Library: Mathematics

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Significance of the Golden Ratio

The golden section and the golden ratio are important to mathematics, art, and architecture. The construction of the golden section goes back at least as far as the ancient Greeks, to the Pythagoreans (ca. 550 B.C.E.–300 B.C.E.). The Pythagoreans believed that numbers were the basis of nature and man, and therefore number relationships like the golden ratio were of utmost importance.

Besides line segments, the golden ratio also appears in many geometric figures. For example, a rectangle is said to be in golden section if its width and length are in the golden ratio (that is, if the width divided by the length equals 0.61803…).

Some scholars believe that various temples of the ancient Greeks, like the Parthenon in Athens, were purposefully produced with various dimensions in the golden ratio. Many of the artists and architects of the Renaissance...

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This section contains 557 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Golden Section Encyclopedia Article
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Macmillan Science Library: Mathematics
Golden Section from Macmillan Science Library: Mathematics. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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