Rare Fibonacci Manuscript Goes Up For Auction
Within the text of the Liber Abaci, Fibonacci explains the benefits of Arabic numerals and the symbol for zero by applying them to the practical world of book-keeping, weights and measures, and trade. By appealing to tradesmen and academics he eventually convinced the public to adapt the system paving the way for modern mathematical equations, sequences used in computer programming and financial markets. The manuscript on offer contains the complete text of the section of Liber Abaci known as Flos or "The Flower," which is the most advanced sections of Liber Abaci, dealing with calculus, and geometrical and algebraic methods for solving quadratic equations. The book first appeared in 1202, in manuscript form, and only 12 copies of the manuscript from the 13th through the 15th centuries have been traced in European libraries, many of them in the Vatican.
Around 1225, Fibonacci attended the court of the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II at the request of His Holiness. During this encounter Frederick's court mathematician challenged Fibonacci to solve three problems, one of which was borrowed from a text by Omar Khayyam of Rubaiyat fame - the text was called Al-jabr ("Algebra"). It is in the Flos chapters of the Liber Abaci that Fibonacci solves the problems. Bound with the Liber Abaci is a second manuscript from a century earlier, which includes a text by Boethius. Together the highly significant manuscript is expected to bring $120,000-180,000 on June 22, 2011 in New York.