Like many heroes of Greek myths, the philosopher Hippasus was rumored to have been mortally punished by the gods. But what was his crime? Did he murder guests or disrupt a sacred ritual? No, Hippasus’s transgression was mathematically proving the hitherto unprovable. Ganesh Pai describes the history and math behind irrational numbers. Lesson by Ganesh Pai, animation by Anton Trofimov.

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