This node brought to you by the Egyptian Division of Everything.

The process used to divide numbers by the scribes of the Ancient Egyptian culture was (naturally) very similar to their multiplication structure.

Let's take 13188 and divide it by 314, the oldschool Egyptian way

**Step 1**: Create a column (away from the left edge of your tablet) beginning with the divisor and doubling it each line thereafter. Stop when you have written down the largest number that is smaller than the dividend.

314
628
1256
2512
5024
10048

**Step 2**: Along the left side of your tablet (or your copy of notepad), write a 1 in the first row. Fill this column with doubles as you did for the other column in the previous step.

1 314
* 2 628*
4 1256
* 8 2512*
16 5024
* 32 10048*

**Step 3**: (Thinking about the mathematical logic behind this step makes my head spin in awe). Mark off the rows whose values in the right column total the dividend. (the marked rows are shown in italics above).

**Step 4**: Total up the marked values from the left column (2+8+32) and you will see that the answer is 42.

See also:

Egyptian MultiplicationEgyptian mathematicsOne more vaguely interesting note: In both the multiplication and division methods illustrated in these two nodes, the bottom-most row is

*always* marked, unless you have made an error.

In the case of remainders, the Egyptians expressed them as unit fractions as detailed in the

Egyptian mathematics node.