My Math Forum How did Pythagoras theorem come about?

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 October 29th, 2008, 07:34 PM #1 Newbie   Joined: Jul 2008 From: Barnaul, Russia Posts: 18 Thanks: 0 How did Pythagoras theorem come about? The subject sais it all. Pythagoras theorem I believe is one of the most fundamental geometric relationships. From that we get a lot of other useful formulae like (sinx)^2 + (cosx)^2 = 1 which in turn appears to be very handy in deriving most trig identities! Why does pythagoras theorem work? I am aware HOW it works, but why does it work and how did one come up with it? Accidental discovery or a logical pursuit? Please help on that.
 October 29th, 2008, 07:39 PM #2 Global Moderator     Joined: Oct 2008 From: London, Ontario, Canada - The Forest City Posts: 7,822 Thanks: 1049 Math Focus: Elementary mathematics and beyond Re: How did Pythagoras theorem come about?
October 29th, 2008, 07:46 PM   #3
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Re: How did Pythagoras theorem come about?

Quote:
 Originally Posted by greg1313 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pythagorean_theorem
That was a killer.. but thanks

 October 31st, 2008, 08:04 PM #4 Global Moderator   Joined: Dec 2006 Posts: 19,178 Thanks: 1646 In the diagram for the proof using similar triangles, note that $\triangle CBH\,+\,\triangle ACH= \triangle ABC.$ Since these triangles are similar, their areas are proportional to the squares of their longest sides. Dividing by the proportionality constant gives Pythagoras's theorem.

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