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May 26, 1969

AD 1040, 1940, or 2080?

JAMA. 1969;208(8):1494. doi:10.1001/jama.1969.03160080158038

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To the Editor:—  I cannot refrain from calling to your attention a typo which appears in the St. Patrick's Day or Salvador Dali issue of The Journal. As March moves rapidly towards April 15th, it is apparent that there are millions of people in this country, including authors and typesetters who could easily put down 1040 in place of almost any number you might mention. A particularly amusing concatenation is the characterization of it as "the late 1040's" (207:2080, 1969).In C. P. Snow's book, Varieties of Men, he reports a conversation between the great mathematician Hardy and a visitor concerning the immense wealth of information and inter-relationships tied up in what might appear to the nonmathematician as a simple number. If I were privy to the mode of entry into the "numbers" game in St. Louis, I would certainly put 25 or 50 cents down today on either