Williams, Gareth and Webster, Roger
Friends in high places.
Mathematical Spectrum, 42(2)
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The article discusses number mysticism, which steams from the belief of the Pythagoreans that natural numbers hold the secret of the universe. The development of the number theory, the recognition of even, odd , prime and composite numbers can be traced back to number mysticism. Thabit ibn Qurra, an Arab polymath, is considered as the first serious contributor in the field of amicable numbers but it was the emergence of Euler in 1737 changed the scene of the field when he was able to discover a total of 62 amicable numbers.
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