MULTIPLICATION TABLE

MS 3866
MS Short Title MULTIPLICATION TABLE
Text MULTIPLICATION TABLE FOR 1.12 ENDING WITH THE SQUARE OF THE HEAD NUMBER 1.12(=72), IN THE SUMERIAN SEXAGESIMAL SYSTEM
Description MS on clay, probably Larsa (before Babylonia), 19th c. BC, 1 tablet, 7,8x4,7x1,8 cm, single column, 15+8 lines in cuneiform script.
Commentary The number 72 or 1 1/5 is the sexagesimal reciprocal of 50, which appears in the standard tables of reciprocals. Scholars have used the absence of any multiplication tables of 1 1/5 as evidence that they did not exist, and that Babylonians did not have multiplication tables for all sexagesimal numbers appearing in their standard table of reciprocals. The present unique tablet proves that making such assumptions is groundless.
Mentioned Jöran Friberg: A remarkable Collection of Babylonian Mathematical Texts. Springer 2007. Sources and Studies in the History of Mathematics and Physical Sciences. Manuscripts in the Schøyen Collection, vol. 6, Cuneiform Texts I. pp. 73-76, 87.
Place of origin Babylonia
Dates ca 19c BC

Location