Bhaskara II (Great Bhaskaracharya)

Bhaskara II (Great Bhaskaracharya)  

Future Point
Views : 5938 | January 2018

Bhaskaracharya was the leading light of 12th Century. After Varahmihir and Bramhgupta no astrologer was as influential and as knowledgeable as Bhaskaracharya. He was born at Bijapur, Karnataka. Bhaskaracharya's Guru was his father whose name was Maheshwar Upadhyay. The great Bhaskaracharya was famous for his book Siddanta Shiromani. It is divided into four sections: Lilavati (Arithmetic), Beejaganit (Algebra), Goladhyaya (Sphere) and Grahaganit (mathematics of planets). Bhaskara introduced Chakrawat Method or the Cyclic Method to solve algebraic equations. This method was rediscovered six centuries later by European mathematicians, who called it inverse cycle. In the nineteenth century, an English man, James Taylor, translated Lilavati and made this great work known to the world.

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Bhaskaracharya's (Bhaskara II) grandson Changadeva was an important astrologer in king Singhana's court. Singhana ruled Devagiri from 1210 to 1237 AD. Another by name Somadeva, a minor king under Singhana, donated towards a special school of astrology (matham based on the teachings of Bhaskaracharya and others) founded by Changadeva. It is known from other such silasasanas that Bhaskara's ancestors too were astrologers in their own right. Upto 6 generations of Bhaskara's ancestors have been referred to.

Bhaskaracharya himself authored two famous books- 'Siddhanta Siromani' and 'Karana Kutoohala' both dealing with Gola and Ganita largely. Bhaskaracharya was 69 years old when he authored 'Karana Kutoohala'. 'Siddhanta Siromani' is a popular text consisting of four divisions or parts- Leelavati, Beejaganita, Ganitadhyaya and Goladhyaya. He gives numbers upto parartha i.e. 10 17 . The eight methods of addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, square, square root, cube, cube root, are all dealt with in this book. Permutations and combinations (ankapasa), unknown quantities (such as X, Y, Z) positive and negative values, zero and infinity, are all dealt with quite elaborately. Of course Bhaskaracharya seems to have followed Brahmagupta's 'Brahmaguptasphuta Siddhanta' (628 AD) as far as the use of Zero in geometry is concerned. Eclipses, planetary rise and set, the earth's radius, trigonometry etc are all covered by Bhaskara II.

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In the yantradhyaya while dealing with various yantras (mechanical devices) to calculate the planetary spheres, he asserts that intelligence is the best of all yantras. The popularity of Bhaskaracharya's works may be inferred from the fact that even Muslim kings like Akbar and Shahjahan supported the translation of Leelavati and Beejaganita to Persian. Numerous commentaries have been written on Bhaskaracharya's work.

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