[next] [prev] [up] Date: Thu, 11 Jun 92 16:52:31 -0400 (EDT)
[next] [prev] [up] From: Guy Steele <gls@think.com >
[next] [prev] [up] Subject: Name query.
From: ronnie@cisco.com
Date: Wed, 10 Jun 92 12:11:35 PDT

Can anyone tell me:-

Why is the "Pons Asinorum" pattern so called ?

Pons Asinorum is Latin for "Asses' Bridge," and is the name of the
proposition that the base angles of an isoceles triangle are equal.
It is more generally any test of ability imposed upon the inexperienced
or ignorant.

The term also carries the connotation that the test is in fact
of the simplest and most elementary kind. If you can't prove
the Pons Asinorum of geometry, then you don't know even the most
elementary concept of geometry--i.e., as a geometer, you know as
much as a donkey. And if you cannot form the Pons Asinorum
pattern, you sure don't know much about cubing.

--Guy Steele

[next] [prev] [up] [top] [help]