Seven' is world's favourite number: study

Apr 09 2014, 17:36 IST
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The survey also found that people have emotional attachments to numbers. (Reuters) The survey also found that people have emotional attachments to numbers. (Reuters)
SummarySeven has emerged as the world's favourite number in an online poll, an expert has claimed.

Seven has emerged as the world's favourite number in an online poll, an expert has claimed.

Alex Bellos, a British author who writes on mathematics, said he has statistical proof that most people prefer the number seven.

Bellos asked 44,000 people in an online survey what their favourite number was.

Almost 10 percent chose the number seven. Only the number three, with 7.5 per cent of the vote, came close.

Odd numbers were particularly popular with 60 per cent of the vote, while no one liked 110, according to the survey.

Bellos wanted to find out why people with little interest in maths seemed to have a favourite number, even though he, an Oxford maths graduate, had no preference, 'The Times' reported.

Psychologists believe that if you ask people to name a number between one and ten they will most often choose seven. Bellos believes it is because that number feels different.

"That would seem to me the most convincing reason. Of the first ten numbers seven is the most prime - you cannot multiply or divide it within the group. It feels unique," Bellos said.

"You can see people react in emotional ways to numerical properties of numbers. We already in our culture venerate these numbers - giving them extra meaning. Maybe it is because we internalise this arithmetic," he said.

The survey also found that people have emotional attachments to numbers.

The survey participants described the number one as independent, strong and brave, two was cautious, wise, fragile, sympathetic, three was opulent and pretentious while four was laid back and a rogue.

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