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e: The Story of a Number by Eli Maor

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9

The Great Controversy

If we must confine ourselves to one system of notation then there can be no doubt that that which was invented by Leibnitz is better fitted for most of the purposes to which the infinitesimal calculus is applied than that of fluxions, and for some (such as the calculus of variations) it is indeed almost essential.—W. W. ROUSE BALL, A Short Account of the History of Mathematics (1908)

Newton and Leibniz will always be mentioned together as the co-inventors of the calculus. In character, however, the two men could hardly be less alike. Baron Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz (or Leibnitz) was born in Leipzig on 1 July 1646. The son of a philosophy professor, the young Leibniz soon showed great intellectual curiosity. His interests, ...

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