In the 18th century, a scientist named Anders Celsius dealt with temperatures. From 1701 to 1744 he lived in Uppsala, a city in Sweden. He was working on a new thermometer and was looking for a solution to compare different temperatures. So he simply set the following: the temperature at which water begins to boil, i.e. at which it is so hot that it evaporates, he gave a value of 100. The temperature at which water freezes to ice, he gave a value of 0 He divided the distance between these two extremes into 100 equal parts. As Celsius invented it back then, we still use the scale today. He also chose the name “degrees Celsius”. The “C” simply stands for the name of the scientist. But where does the term “degree” and the small circle come from?
Degree Symbol in Mathematics
You don’t really know. For example, Ptolemy, an astronomer who lived in the 2nd century AD, used the small circle degree symbol. But he did not invent the sign either, it was in use for a long time – as a value for part of the circle. In mathematics, a circle consists of 360 equal parts – it has 360 °. The number “360” probably comes from the fact that in ancient times the year was divided into 12 lunar cycles of 30 days each – a total of 360 days.
The number of days in a year, which was very special for the people of antiquity, was then simply transferred to other areas – such as mathematics. You just used it to describe a full circle. This could then be divided into different angles: 180 ° is therefore a half circle, 90 ° a quarter and so on.
Mr. Celsius simply used a familiar symbol for a new thing: as a unit for measuring temperatures – the temperature scale has nothing to do with the division into 360. In order to distinguish a geometric angle and a temperature, there is a small difference in the spelling: At temperatures there is always a space after the number (25_ ° C) and before the degrees symbol, at angles the degree sign follows the number without a space (25 °) – and of course the “C” is also missing.
Degree Symbol in Temperatures
There are other common units to measure temperatures. One of them is called Fahrenheit and is also named after a scientist: after the German Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit, who lived from 1686 to 1736. The degree symbol is also used here: 25 ° F. But that is only a cold -3.9 ° C.
And then there is the Kelvin degree unit , named after William Thomson, 1st, the Baron of Kelvin. Zero Kelvin – without degrees – is the lowest temperature that can theoretically be reached. That is -273 degrees Celsius. So water freezes at 273 Kelvin, zero degrees Celsius. All about degrees reach here https://degreessymbolsign.com/ and learn something new.