Talk:Weierstrass p

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script capital P[edit]

What is the connection between the Weierstrass p and the script capital P also mentioned on this page? I don't see a connection made by the given sources, so why is the script capital P here? Zerotalk 00:54, 25 June 2011 (UTC)

The “Script Capital P” is the Weierstrass p—or more precisely, it’s Unicode’s name for the same character. — (talk) 03:30, 1 August 2014 (UTC)

the Weierstrass p-letter doesn`t exist acc 2my knowledge and my reffences. i`ll apply a claim for some copyright issuev of the handdrawn image, because resembling partially my own artwork. it`s like you draw something in your spare time and some corporation says it`s theirs and includes in papers too. paul188.25.105.212 (talk) 16:31, 4 April 2012 (UTC)


I propose to turn this page into the redirect to Weierstrass's elliptic functions (WP hereafter). Let me first give a summary:

  • The two alleged names, "Weierstrass p" and "pe" are difficult to believe.
  • The mention to the confusion with the power set symbol is off-topic.
  • The idiosyncrasy of Unicode name has to be mentioned, but it is parenthetical.

I made a new section "typography " in the page Weierstrass's elliptic function. I think it can replace this page.


This page was first created as a redirect to WP. In 2008, User:Momotaro turned this page in this edit to a separate article. At the same time in this edit to WP, Momotaro wrote ℘ is "called Weierstrapss p".

  • Is it really true that the word "Weierstrass p" was (and is) an established name of this letter? To whom? In typography industry? If so, why Unicode gave the wrong name? Wasn't this page ("Weierstrass p") created as an informal alias of "Weierstrass p-function"?
    • In this document published in 2006, Unicode says it should have been named "'calligraphic small p' or perhaps even 'Weierstrass elliptic function symbol'".
  • It is unlikely that the too short name "pe" is used to identify this letter. (It was written in this post.) I suspect it's simply the German spelt-out name of the letter "p". (But then you should write "Pe", i.e. in capital.)
  • Why have there never been any sources to support these claimed names? (Please be sure to cite sources that are not influenced by Wikipedia, if anyone tries to find one.)

What's important is that Wikipedia should not fabricate false names nor false facts.

The unicode name "script capital p" is wrong and thus confusing, so it has to be explained. But its detail is a minute matter. The mention done in my edit at Weierstrass's elliptic function#typography must be sufficient.

The confusion with the power set symbol is sporadic, and it's up to those who confuse. Its has only quite limited relevance to ℘ itself.--Teika kazura (talk) 04:53, 28 July 2017 (UTC)

Support. As someone who once reverted the change of Weierstrass p into a redirect to Weierstrass's elliptic functions (diff), let me say that I would support the change you propose. The content you added to that new subsection Weierstrass's elliptic functions#Typography is more than adequate. Tea2min (talk) 12:04, 31 July 2017 (UTC)
CommentOppose: My personal opinion: I don't see the advantage of putting everything into the big article about the Weierstrass function. The letter is something that exists independently of the function and can be used for other things. It's a small article about a small thing; I think that's fine.
But back to the facts: I agree that "pe" makes no sense. When I created this article nine years ago I called it "Weierstrass p" by my authority of being a professional mathematician - of course I don't expect that argument to convince anyone. But I am quite convinced that is how we mathematicians usually call it, and mathematicians determine what is "common usage" in this case. You'll never find an official survey on how the symbol should be called in the mathematical community, but Google gives anecdotal evidence: this MacUser magazine from 1992, or this mathematical book from 2006 by Peter Roquette, who even says a little more about the symbol. --Momotaro (talk) 06:09, 3 August 2017 (UTC)
If you want some redirections, I'd mention now with latex and computers it became the Weierstrass wp function. Reuns (talk) 07:17, 7 August 2017 (UTC)

@Reuns: I'm not sure if I understand you correctly, but "\wp" is a (La)TeX command, not the name of the function itself. See Weierstrass's elliptic functions#Typography.

@Momotaro: Thanks a lot. Although your citations are convincing enough about the existence of the word. there're a few points I'm not sure yet. I opened a question in (Because elliptic functions are important in applied math, too, asking at may not be best/sufficient.) I don't know if it will help when limited to our purpose in Wikipedia, but anyway there's already a really intriguing answer about history. Let's wait for a while.

Still, I don't think this article can remain as an independent page; there's not so much to write. The story about Hasse and Noether interested me a lot, but it's trivia. Maybe I (or anyone) will change the section name "Typography" to "The symbol ℘"

"pe" has to be deleted. Its contributor (MiQ) says that MiQ posted what Miq is nor was not sure about, and it was without verification. Guessing from this answer, it seems to be a confusion, as I pointed out above. (It's the function that was called "Pe-function" by some authors.)

(Sorry, I withdraw this paragraph; it's a side issue.) (Speaking aloud) One, though irrelevant, wonder I have is: what does Roquette exactly mean by formerly it was called Weierstrass-p? -- Teika kazura (talk) 08:42, 7 August 2017 (UTC)

Comment Roquette does not say that the symbol was "formerly" called Weierstrass-p; he says that the symbol called Weierstrass-p was formerly in use ("Formerly this symbol, known as the Weierstrass-p, was used to denote the elliptic function ℘ (z)"). Also, I would like to be clear, I did not say that I "was not sure about" pe (as stated above), only that I am not now, because I have no memory of it; I would not have made the edit at the time if I had not been reasonably certain of what I was posting. (I'm not defending the content of the edit, just clarifying what I have said about it.) See more on my talk page for the response I gave to your question there. — the Man in Question (in question) 19:03, 7 August 2017 (UTC)
Sorry, I withdraw the question about "formerly" because it was a side issue. (Maybe it's best to forget that word; grammatically you're right, but it contradicts the fact that ℘ is in use, as Roquette says so few lines below.) --Teika kazura (talk) 04:30, 25 August 2017 (UTC)

Update, corroborating my initial proposal.

I posted my research about the name "Weierstrass p" in as an answer. My impression is "Weierstrass p" is one of misnomers in computing, mostly of older standards. Together with other idiosyncratic names, it's becoming almost obsolete. Of course ℘ is used by the users of the p-function, thus that name might have been spread among those who know ellpitic functions, but I'd rather not say it's the word "in mathematics".
In p 26 of Knuth's book , the word "Weierstrass's p" is found. But in the index, there's only the entry "Weierstrass, Karl Theodor Wilhelm", pointing to pp 26, 233 and 235. It's unlikely Knuth thought that "Weierstrass's p" was its name.

About the "questionnaire" result: My question in has attracted intermediate interest: One answer has got 22 upvotes, and the quesion has been viewed about 1000 times. Despite that, no one has said they call it "Weierstrass p". One explicitly said "I've never heard of that". (About 20 days has passed. It's not a hot topic any more.)

It's excessively detailed to mention all older, wrong / inappropriate names in computing. I think the current page of Weierstrass's elliptic functions is almost sufficient, rendering this page a redirect.

(See also my updated question for early notations for p-functions;.) --Teika kazura (talk) 04:30, 25 August 2017 (UTC)

pronunciation of pe[edit]

From the article: the Weierstrass p (℘, {\displaystyle \wp } \wp ), also called pe.

It's not obvious how pe is pronounced. (pee? pee-ee? P (like the letter P)? something else?) This should be made clear. Omc (talk) 23:09, 31 January 2018 (UTC)