Quincunx (disambiguation)

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A quincunx is a geometric pattern consisting of five points, four in a square with one more in the middle of the square.

Quincunx may also refer to:

  • Quincunx matrix, a 2×2 Hadamard matrix that generates points in a diagonal lattice pattern
  • Bean machine, also called a quincunx, a machine designed by Sir Francis Galton to demonstrate normal distributions, consisting of an array of pins in a diagonal lattice pattern
  • Quincuncial map, a method of mapping the globe onto a square so that the poles map to the five points of a quincunx
  • Place des Quinconces, a city square in Bordeaux, France, named for the quincunx pattern in which its trees were planted
  • In 19th-century mathematics, "quincunx" was used to describe a rhombic lattice, the points of intersection of two families of equally spaced parallel lines

Quincunxes in literature include:

  • The Garden of Cyrus or The Quincunciall Lozenge is a 1658 philosophical treatise by Sir Thomas Browne concerning interconnections in art and science involving the number five and the quincunx pattern
  • Quincunx is a lake with an island containing Mistress Masham's Repose in the 1946 novel of that name by T. H. White
  • The Quincunx of Time is a 1973 science fiction novel by James Blish. The title refers to an orchard in the Academy of Plato, planted in a quincunx pattern
  • The Avignon Quintet is a set of five novels that its author, Lawrence Durrell, described as forming a quincunx. The fifth, Quinx (1985), has a plot that includes the discovery of a stone quincunx pattern
  • The Quincunx is a 1989 novel by Charles Palliser that traces five related families over five generations

In biology, "quincuncial" has multiple meanings but does not generally refer to the five-point quincunx pattern:

  • Quincuncial aestivation is an arrangement of the parts of a flower bud prior to opening found in some plants
  • Quincuncina is a genus of freshwater mussels named for the pattern of nodules on its shells

The following uses relate to the original meaning of a quincunx as a 5/12 fraction rather than to the geometric pattern: