The Indians came up with zero, isn't that known?
This is the best tl;dr I could make, [original](https://www.theguardian.com/science/2017/sep/14/much-ado-about-nothing-ancient-indian-text-contains-earliest-zero-symbol
) reduced by 85%. (I'm a bot)
> In the fragile document, zero does not yet feature as a number in its own right, but as a placeholder in a number system, just as the "0" in "101" indicates no tens.
> It also sowed the seed for zero as a number, which is first described in a text called Brahmasphutasiddhanta, written by the Indian astronomer and mathematician Brahmagupta in 628AD. "This becomes the birth of the concept of zero in it's own right and this is a total revolution that happens out of India," said Du Sautoy.
> Despite developing sophisticated maths and geometry, the ancient Greeks had no symbol for zero showing that while the concept zero may now feel familiar, it is not an obvious one.
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In hindsight it's easy to wonder about so many things that were invented seemingly much later than you'd expect. Zero seems like such an obvious, essential concept to have been invented and popularized relatively late.
Like I wonder why no one tried to build a bicycle before 19th century.
What's interesting is the religious resistance to the idea of zero. Something something creatio ex nihilo. Remember the Roman numerals have no such marker. I think it was only in Venice when they realized how much easier it is to do accounting with it, so it bled in to the West that way. There used to be abacus vs algebra competitions to see who could calculate faster.
). It's one of my faves.
Thanks, India, for giving the whole world zero to major civilizations during the medieval era.