# Definition:Rational Number/Geometrical Definition

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## Definition

The definitions of **rational numbers** and **irrational numbers** as specified in Euclid's *The Elements* is different from the contemporary definitions:

In the words of Euclid:

*With these hypotheses, it is proved that there exist straight lines infinite in multitude which are commensurable and incommensurable respectively, some in length only, and others in square also, with an assigned straight line. Let then the assigned straight line be called***rational**, and those straight lines which are commensurable with it, whether in length and in square or square only,**rational**, but those which are incommensurable with it**irrational**.

(*The Elements*: Book $\text{X}$: Definition $3$)

*And let the square on the assigned straight line be called***rational**and those areas which are commensurable with it**rational**, but those which are incommensurable with it**irrational**, and the straight lines which produce them**irrational**, that is, in case the areas are squares, the sides themselves, but in case they are any other rectilineal figures, the straight lines on which are described squares equal to them.

(*The Elements*: Book $\text{X}$: Definition $4$)