# Mathematician:Rafael Bombelli

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## Mathematician

Italian mathematician whose influence may have been greater than is currently recognised.

- Documented the rules for multiplication involving negative numbers.

- Pioneered the work on the understanding of imaginary numbers, using as a springboard Cardano's Formula for the solution of the cubic.

- Developed a method of solving square roots by an approach related to continued fractions.

Also worked as a civil engineer, gaining a high reputation for his involvement in the draining of the Val di Chiana marshes.

## Nationality

Italian

## History

- Born: Jan 1526, Bologna, Papal States (now Italy)
- Died: 1572 or 1573, (probably) Rome, Papal States (now Italy)

## Publications

- Attempted a translation of the
*Arithmetica*of Diophantus. - 1572:
*Algebra*(3 volumes of 5) - 1929: The last two volumes of
*Algebra*published.

## Also known as

Some sources report his first name as **Raphael**, which may be a mistake.

## Sources

- John J. O'Connor and Edmund F. Robertson: "Rafael Bombelli": MacTutor History of Mathematics archive

- 1998: David Nelson:
*The Penguin Dictionary of Mathematics*(2nd ed.) ... (previous) ... (next): Entry:**Bombelli, Rafael**(1526-72) - 2008: David Nelson:
*The Penguin Dictionary of Mathematics*(4th ed.) ... (previous) ... (next): Entry:**Bombelli, Rafael**(1526-72) - 2014: Christopher Clapham and James Nicholson:
*The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Mathematics*(5th ed.) ... (previous) ... (next): Entry:**Bombelli, Rafael**(1526-72/3)