To count even some animals. For example, the crow, according to ornithologists, is able to count to seven, and even nine. Raven realizes that seven cherries more than six. But a bunch of ten and eleven cherries for her the same.
People at the dawn of civilization in numeracy was inferior to modern ravens. They were distinguished from each other sovokupnosti or three subjects. About more items, they simply said "a Lot". But it was only the germ of an account. Then there were words to describe the concepts of "four", "five", "six".
"Seven" has long remained the largest number. It has therefore been defined and indefinitely large number. The memory of this era were preserved and some Proverbs. For example, "measure twice - cut once", "Seven woes one answer, "seven nurses - a child without an eye.
But soon these numbers was not enough.
To empower account people enjoyed the surrounding objects as tools: notches on sticks and trees, the nodes on the ropes, folded in piles of stones, etc., But the most important natural tool account of human fingers, they were always there and is distinguished by great mobility. Numbers have not yet had names, it was possible to show with their fingers. Naturally, newly emerging name numbers were often built on the basis of the number 10 is the number of fingers. Sometimes such basis as was the number 5 is the number of fingers on one hand or the top 20 by the number of fingers and toes.
Increasing the number of numbers used by the people, was very slow. Especially long period went on "overcoming" the first dozen. Thus, the number 40 has long been the limit of the account. The same word was called and an indefinitely large number. In Russian the word "fortyfoot" makes sense "manylegs", and the expression "forty times" means the number that surpasses all imagination.
Development account did not stop there, he has achieved the following important limit: ten tens. Appeared in the top 100, which changed the number 40 in place indefinitely large number. This is the meaning it has, for example, in the puzzle: is pop in is low, it is a hundred Rizak (cabbage). Subsequently, the number 100 is replaced by the number 1 000, then 10 thousand (in the old days it was called "darkness"), a million and so on
How people learned to count?