HBICs of history » H y p a t i a

Hypatia (ca. 351–370 AD) was a Greek philosopher and the daughter of Theon of Alexandria, who taught her mathematics. About 400 AD she became head of the Platonist school at Alexandria, where she lectured on the philosophy known as Neoplatonism. This combined Plato’s ideas with a mix of Christian, Jewish, and East Asian influences and emphasized striving for an unreachable ultimate reality. Her edition of Euclid’s Elements, prepared with her father, became the basis for all later versions. Christians deemed her philosophical views pagan - one day, in March 415 AD, during Lent, a mob of Christians led by Peter the Reader, waylaid Hypatia’s chariot as she travelled home.The mob attacked Hypatia, stripped her naked as a form of humiliation, then dragged her through the streets to the recently Christianised Caesareum, where they killed her.

She is considered to be the first woman of any importance in the history of mathematics.

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