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# Mathematics in foreign languages

By Luca Lollobrigida on 11/04/2016

Mathematics knows no national borders, and one is often called upon to converse about mathematics in a language that is not one’s native tongue.

To make this easier for you, we have gathered here some information on this topic:

- The Dictionary of Mathematical Concepts in European languages: How do you say ‘square root’ in Portuguese? Or ‘equation’ in Turkish?
- The Dictionary of Mathematical Symbols: How, for example, do you say ‘47/11’ in Italian?
- These dictionaries may be of help in understanding texts, but they do not equip one for speaking or writing mathematics in another language.

For those who wish to make themselves understood when*English*is concerned —today’s mathematical ‘lingua franca’—important information can be found here. Cf. also this short note on the correct use of the indefinite article (“a” or “an”?) in mathematics.

Cartoon: Bernd Pohlenz

Over time we shall assemble here additional aids for both passive and active language understanding. The following already exist:

**Croatian:**Help for Croatian -> English**French:**The webpage http://www-fourier.ujf-grenoble.fr/~dpiau/howto.html is very helpful.**German:**- Help for German -> English.
- Help for German -> French.
- Help for German -> Spanish.
- Help for German -> Italian.

**Italian:**Help for Italian -> English**Polish:**Help for Polish -> English**Turkish:**Help for Turkish -> English

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