# Definition:Complex Plane/Historical Note

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## Historical Note on Complex Plane

It is reported by Ian Stewart and David Tall, in their *Complex Analysis (The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Plane)* of $1983$, that John Wallis represented a complex number using this technique in his *A Treatise on Algebra*, but for some reason was ignored.

This has not been corroborated by $\mathsf{Pr} \infty \mathsf{fWiki}$, and there may be some doubt as to its truth, considering the given publication date of *A Treatise on Algebra* ($1673$) does not match that given by all other sources found ($1685$).

It is widely reported that the concept of the **complex plane** was an invention of Caspar Wessel, independently of Jean-Robert Argand and Carl Friedrich Gauss.

## Sources

- 1983: Ian Stewart and David Tall:
*Complex Analysis (The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Plane)*... (previous) ... (next): $0$ The origins of complex analysis, and a modern viewpoint: $1$. The origins of complex numbers