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Luca Pacioli

Luca Pacioli was a founding father of accounting.


Luca Pacioli

Painting of Luca Pacioli

Public Domain
Italian mathematician and Franciscan monk, Luca Pacioli was born in Sansepulcro, Tuscany, Italy in 1445.

Particularis de Computis et Scripturis

In 1494, Luca Pacioli wrote his famous book Summa de arithmetica, geometria, proportioni et proportionalita (The Collected Knowledge of Arithmetic, Geometry, Proportion and Proportionality), his intentions were to improve and spread the knowledge of mathematics. One chapter of his book Particularis de Computis et Scripturis was a treatise on accounting. The Computis educated readers about the use of journals and ledgers, and keeping account of assets, receivables, inventories, liabilities, capital, income, expenses, keeping a balance sheet, and making an income statement. Pacioli was the first person to describe and instruct in double-entry accounting, the Venetian method, the Computis educated businessmen for centuries to come.

Luca Pacioli and Leonardo da Vinci

After Luca Pacioli wrote Suma, he was invited to teach mathematics at the Court of Duke Lodovico Maria Sforzo in Milan. Artist and inventor, Leonardo da Vinci was one of Pacioli's students in Milan. Pacioli and da Vinci became close friends and collaborators with Da Vinci illustrating Pacioli's manuscript De Divina Proportione (Of Divine Proportion"), and Pacioli teaching Da Vinci the mathematics of perspective and proportionality.

Luca Pacioli died on June 19, 1517.

About the painting: The painting of Luca Pacioli on this page was painted by Italian painter Jacopo de Barbari in 1495. In the painting, Pacioli is depicted in his Franciscan monk's robes, on the table are geometrical tools: slate, chalk, compass, and a dodecahedron model, and suspended in the air is a rhombicuboctahedron shaped glass half-filled with water.

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