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Collins "Dictionary of Mathematics" by Ephraim J. Borowski and Jonathan M. Borwein

A dictionary filled with mathematical terms and definitions, making this the very first book we ever purchased in relation to Mathematics!

You're looking at the very first book we have purchased as soon as our interest in Mathematics began to develop. We're not sure why it took long to talk about this book, but what the heck, I'm sure people will get a kick out of likely considering something filled with mathematical terms they can always look up when needed. Why not? There are even terms we never knew existed and what mathematical disciplines use such practice(s). Oh, sure, you can look up these terms online but because of the craze of hanging on to physical media, wouldn't it nice to have a companion that's easily accessible without having to take a few minutes to boot up your computational device just to look them up?

What we love about this dictionary is how friendly the terms and definitions are. It's not written in a way that only someone with big mathematical prowess is able to know. Not at all: This dictionary is approachable to those of any level of math knowledge willing to know more or to extend their knowledge of terms in a more defined explanation, instead of responding to questions with the answer, "Oh, well, that's the way it is." As mentioned earlier, there are also a chunk full of terms and definitions we didn't even know about and various formulas used in certain studies of interest (i.e. electrical engineering). While it's humanly impossible to understand and to know all mathematical disciplines, it's still fun to read about. Granted, being that this is a dictionary, it's not something you'd read cover to cover, but the definitions also include illustrated samples and examples to further emphasize its meaning(s).

This is one of those books you rarely see at schools and at the workplace. We're not sure about how our current education system here in the US feels about math, but we feel that subjects like this ought to be prioritized and taught in a way that's gentle and fun. It is my personal belief that there's no such thing as a "difficult" subject, knowing that there's a way to teach subjects that even the layperson can grasp (if I can understand advanced topics such as Quantum Computer Science, brim with lots of Linear Algebra, so can you and anyone else all thanks to those who taught it so thoroughly). The fact that this book even exists proves that there's a lot to be learned about Math, which is an exciting thing given that there's a rich amount of information to learn and be curious about. Stereotypically, it's not just physics, business, astronomy or anything you've learned in school, there's a HUGE amount of math used in various areas of study in our world that's impossible to ignore. Okay, I understand, math gives people anxiety, but perhaps a book like this will help reduce those worries—no, seriously, check that out.

Perhaps to make the most out of your purchase of this book, this includes a Preface to get to know the authors a little more, and online resources to extend your knowledge and research of the subject. Those online websites include some tools available for purchase for both students, teachers and professionals in the business. We had to mention this since this isn't just a plain-old dictionary. Added with it are pages dedicated to Hilbert Problems and Millenium Prize Problems, and my personal favorite, Symbols and Conventions.

A simple and humble book to own and check out. Take a gander and own this today!





  • First book we purchased of any kind.
  • Excellent and friendly reference book for all levels.
  • Includes examples and some illustrations to further extend the definitions' meanings.
  • Has vocabulary terms seldom used, talked about and/or discussed among other, sometimes rare, areas of study.
  • A must for any student, professor, enthusiast, and/or professional.
  • Also includes online websites and resources to extend one's knowledge of the subject, both for school or for business.
  • None.
100% (A+)
Fan Rating
Title Collins "Dictionary of Mathematics"
Author(s) Ephraim J. Borowski and Jonathan M. Borwein

Over 9,000 entries on all aspects of mathematics

• Comprehensive coverage of pure and applied mathematics, with over 400 diagrams.
• Lists of symbols and conventions and of derivatives and integrals of common functions
• Up-to-date internet links help you explore the subject further
• E.J. Borowski is a former Head of the Department of Philosophy at Glasgow University; J. Borwein holds a Canada Research Chair at Dalhousie University and is a past President of the Canadian Mathematical Society
• 'Undergraduates will find it invaluable' MATHEMATICAL SPECTRUM
Dedication In memory of our grandparents
ISBN 978-0-00-780080-3 / 0-00-780080-0
Book Dimensions Width: 5.13″ (5 1/8″)
Height: 7 ¾″
Depth: 0.56″ (9/16″)
Page Count 656
Contents Preface, Dictionary of Mathematics, Symbols and Conventions, Table of Derivatives and Integrals, Hilbert Problems, Millenium Problems, Forty-Four useful constants, Web Resources
Typeset by Davidson Pre-Press Graphics Ltd, Glasgow
Published First published 1989; Second edition 2002; Reissued [January 1,] 2005; Published in 2007.
Publisher Collins, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers 77-85 Fulham Palace Road London W6 8JB (www.collins.co.uk).
Printed and bound in Great Britain by Clays Ltd, St Ives plc.
Book Format Paperback
Quoted Reviews "Undergraduates will find it invaluable" — Mathematical Spectrum
Best Seller's List --
Other © E.J. Borwski and J. M. Borwein 1989, 2002

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior permission of the publisher.

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This book is sold subject to the conditions that it shall not, by way of trade or otherwise, be lent, re-sold, hired out or otherwise circulated without the publisher's prior consent in any form of binding or cover other than that in which it is published and without a similar condition being imposed on the subsequent publisher.

A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data --
CIP Number --
LC Control Number --
LC Call Number --
DDC Call Number --


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