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I remember to have seen an encyclopedia-type-of mathematics book that describes for each topic contained in it when and by who it was invented or when it was first mentioned. I.e. quaternion: Hamilton, Ireland, 1843 ( probably the tree anecdote as well. ) I tried Google Books, Amazon, Google, the Open University Library search, but I can't find it anymore.

Does anyone know which book it could have been? ( It does exist! It was written for an undergraduate audience, if I remember well. )

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What's the tree anecdote? I only know of Brougham Bridge. –  t.b. Dec 17 '11 at 12:15
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The same, I thought he carved it on a tree, but it was on a bridge, wasn't it. –  ndroock1 Dec 17 '11 at 12:20

2 Answers 2

Are you referring to this:

Mathematics 1001: Absolutely Everything That Matters About Mathematics in 1001 Bite-Sized Explanations

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Not that I recall by name, and I can't preview it on Google books. I vividly remember a comprehensive list of concepts followed by when it first appeared in the literature. –  ndroock1 Dec 28 '11 at 10:15
    
Seen that book now, it is not it, alas. –  ndroock1 Jan 2 '12 at 10:05
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The book I was looking for is http://books.google.nl/books?id=MfKKMSuthacC&dq=encyclopedia+of+mathematics+james+tanton&source=gbs_navlinks_s The Encyclopedia of Mathematics by James Tanton.

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