• John Stillwell
Part of the Undergraduate Texts in Mathematics book series (UTM)


We are now on the brink of solving several of the problems posed in Chapter 1, so it is a good time to review what we know. In Chapter 1 we looked at constructibility by straightedge and compass, and found that the constructible numbers result from 1 by closing under +, −, ×, ÷ (hence they form a field) and square roots of positive numbers. At the same time, we found that the solution of certain geometric problems reduced to the solution of cubic or higher degree equations not obviously solvable by +, −, ×, ÷ and square roots. In particular, duplication of the cube requires solution of the equation x3 − 2 = 0, and construction of the regular p-gon requires solution of the equation xP−1 + ... + x +1 = 0.


Algebraic Number Irreducible Polynomial Algebraic Element Constructible Number Nonlinear Algebra 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Stillwell
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of MathematicsMonash UniversityClaytonAustralia

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