What is a prime number?

18 Mar

I have a nephew who adores maths and is exceptionally advanced for his age. Which is how I came to be staring today at a bunch of equations I couldn’t decode on a homework sheet, all the while nodding intelligently as if I actually understood the answers. Things were so bad that when he asked if I knew what a prime number was, I finally had to confess I don’t. Or at least I didn’t, since I naturally made it the subject of today’s knowledge quest.

And here’s the answer…

A prime number is any number greater than 1 that can only be evenly divided by itself or 1. So, for example, 5 and 7 are prime numbers as they only divide respectively by 1 or 5 or 7 while 6 is not a prime number as it divides not only by 1 and 6, but also by two and three.

Never let it be said I don’t ever learn/shareanything practical!

 

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