Thursday, February 2, 2012


(pronounced FIB-on-AT-chee)
Image from

Leonardo Pisano is better known by his nickname Fibonacci. He was born in Italy but educated in North Africa where his father held a diplomatic post. Fibonacci was taught mathematics in Bugia, an Algerian port city. He travelled widely with his father and recognised the enormous advantages of the mathematical systems used in the countries they visited. 

Fibonacci ended his travels around the year 1200 and returned to Pisa. There, he wrote a number of texts which played an important role in reviving ancient mathematical skills and made significant contributions of his own. Of his books, some no longer exist, but we still have copies of Liber abaci written in 1202. A mathematical problem in Liber abaci led to the introduction of the Fibonacci numbers and the Fibonacci sequence for which he is best remembered today:
"A certain man put a pair of rabbits in a place surrounded on all sides by a wall. How many pairs of rabbits can be produced from that pair in a year if it is supposed that every month each pair begets a new pair which from the second month on becomes productive?"
Trying to figure out things like this muddles my brain and neurons go off like holiday fireworks. I generally have to draw pictures with arrows, so I'll take it from the experts that the resulting sequence is 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144 and so on. In this sequence each number is the sum of the two preceding numbers. It appears in many different areas of mathematics and science. It relates directly to the growth patterns of trees, shells, flowers and animals, the proportions of human bodies and what we perceive as visually appealing or beautiful, and so much more.

You may have noticed that the Zentangle kit contains 34 blank tiles. You can buy tiles alone in packs of 55.

Here is a beautiful video that gives an overall impression, and a bit of hard information, about the Fibonacci numbers and sacred geometry. (Go full screen. It's worth it.)


  1. Great post - I'm right there with you on the brain muddle. The video is wonderful - great way to start the morning, thanks.

  2. This really reinforces the idea that there is order to our universe. Beautiful!

  3. OH my word...what an amazingly beautiful video! I had to share it, thanks so much for the inspiration xx

  4. Yes, Fibonacci numbers are everywhere. They are in nature, artists are using them in their works, I use them in my trading... Great numbers :)

    Nice video, haven't seen that one before. Thanks!