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The Roman Numerals Essay

1007 words - 5 pages

Roman Numerals
Christian Gracia
Texas A&M University Corpus Christi

In this paper I will be talking about the Roman Numerals, a system that started showing up in the early 500 B.C. This system consists in symbols used to represent different numbers, most of these symbols have a meaning behind that has to do with using the hands. Just as we have rules in our system they also had their own rules that needed to be followed. They developed a way to write numbers in a larger way by placing bars in different places when writing a number, this meant that the number was being multiplied by a certain quantity. Addition and Subtraction is a method like the one we use now a day ...view middle of the document...

Also in this system the number zero does not exist, why? Because they did not needed it.
For addition the romans would have to undo the numbers as if there would be no rules in the way of writing it, it is hard to explain but I have an example of the way they would do it. For example if they were to add 49 + 25 they would normally write it like this XLIX + XXV but the answer would be wrong so what they had to do is that instead of using XL to refer to number 40, they would write this way XXXX. Now let’s solve this, for 49 they would have to write XXXXVIIII and for 25 XXV so XXXXVIIII + XXV = XXXXVIXIXIVI then, we have to arrange them from biggest to smallest XXXXXXVVIIII and we count how many X, V and I we have. Once we counted now we can write the answer as they would normally write their numbers which would be LXXIV. For subtraction is kind of like the same but a little bit complicated when you are about to get the answer. If they would like to subtract 19 – 12 instead for writing it like this XIX – XII they would have to use the same process as addition by expressing it like this XVIIII – XII. The answer would be XVIIX first they would have to cross out the first X, so they would be left with VIIX, if you observe it would be kind of like 7 – 10 which gives us the answer III.
Romans also had they system for fractions, they would use dots. They thought that the “Duodecimal system” was good since twelve was an easy way to divide fractions. 1/12 “•” which means an ounce, 2/12 = 1/6 “••” a sixth, 3/12 = ¼ “•••” a quarter, 4/12 = 1/3 “••••” a third, 5/12 “•••••” five-ounce, and so on. The dots were not necessarily in a line, they were arranged similarly to the different...

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