Origin of Theta
I read your response to why we use the letter x in
Algebra, but my question is why we use the Greek letter Theta in
Trigonometry to represent an angle?
It is just a convention.
Nothing really dictates that folks use theta to represent angles
in trigonometry. But when a lot of folks use the same letter the
same way it increases
understanding about what is being talked about.
It is like, "Why does a red traffic light mean stop and a green
light mean go? Why is it not the other way around?"
This has become an international convention so people can drive
in other countries without having to learn new rules all of the time.
To my knowledge, there is nothing special about the Greek letter Theta.
Greek letters are commonly used vs. Roman script to distinguish
"variables" and "constants", but even that does not have any particular
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Update: June 2012