How to Identify Numbers on Brass From India

by Bob Romanov
The relationship between Indian numerals and our Arabic numerals is ancient.

The relationship between Indian numerals and our Arabic numerals is ancient.

When trying to identify Indian numbers on brass, all that is necessary is a chart to translate the numerals from Indian numerals into Arabic numerals (the historical name of our numerical system). An important distinction to understand is that a "numeral" is a single written digit, while a "number" is the quantity represented by the numerals. Indian numbers are written the same way as Arabic ones, left to right. Indian numbers use zero, as well.

Visit website (see References) to refer to chart.

Find any of the numerical symbols from the chart on the brass. They will all be from a single row.

Translate each Indian numeral into modern Arabic numerals (our numeral system), writing the modern Arabic numerals down one at a time in the order they appear, left to right.

Read the number you have written down. This is the translation of the Indian number.

Items you will need

  • Brass object with Indian numbers
  • Pad of paper
  • Pencil

About the Author

Bob Romanov has been writing since 1990, specializing in music technology and video games. He makes music professionally and has built several of his own electronic instruments. He is an authority on all kinds of video games, from vintage Atari 2600 to the newest generation of console and PC games. Romanov holds a bachelor's degree from Goddard College.

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