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I'm trying to write mathematics in English and I'm clearly missing something : linking words. I'm writing "so, we get", "Observe that" too many times and I'm afraid to use some expressions : "it implies" sound weird for me (and I don't know if I'm right here...) for example.

So I'm looking for good AND bad linkings words for writing Mathematics in order to diversify my mathematical language.

Thank you

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May I suggest reading some mathematics in English, and seeing what other people use? – Gerry Myerson Oct 18 '13 at 11:37
It is well known that the official language of science is broken English. :-) – Asaf Karagila Oct 18 '13 at 11:45
I support the advise of GerryMeyerson: read papers written in good English. If there are no such papers in your subject, read papers on other subjects. – Alexandre Eremenko Oct 18 '13 at 12:49
@Asaf, I believe the official language of mathematics is broken LaTeX. – Gerry Myerson Oct 18 '13 at 22:02
@Gerry: $\rm You~~doesn\'t~~say!$ – Asaf Karagila Oct 18 '13 at 22:05
up vote 19 down vote accepted

I can recommend you the booklet Writing Mathematical Papers in English, Jerzy Trzeciak, EMS Publishing,

It contains many lists of useful expressions to borrow from.

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I was about to post the comment about the same book. For example, on page 15 there is a sample of phrases useful in formulation arguments in proofs. (Checking the book on Google Books might be useful for the OP anyway, so that they know what the books look like.) – Martin Sleziak Oct 18 '13 at 11:45
I agree this book is very good for the requested purpose (and more geenrally for non-native speakers). I have read or at least browsed various books on math writing (in English), but most (all) others feel more like from native speakers for native speakers, while this one seems targeted at non-native speakers (and also is from a non-native speaker, AFAIK). – quid Oct 18 '13 at 13:03

Another option is to look at past works that have won awards, some examples can be found at:

Mathematical Association of America Writing Awards

Journal of Physics A: Mathematical and Theoretical Best Paper Prize

It looks as though many of the above papers are freely available.

I also like to read older works. Sometimes the written style and clarity is very good. One of my favourites is Investigations on the Theory of Brownian Movement, Albert Einstein. (OK I'll confess that this is a subject of interest to me). This was translated by Cowper and Edited by Furth - so the written quality is very good. I have a hard copy, but fortunately a pdf can be found at

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If you are Russian, everything was done for us by A.B. Sosinsky in his great book "How to write a mathematical article in English", here is a link ( The book is of course in Russian. It helped me many times in my life.

Other suggestions -- reading other articles or finding some English speaking friends to reread them after. If these friends do know mathematics, even better. THe friend who helps me out was studying English litterature and know is donig her MD career. But her mathematical English is much better than mine!

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Now that I’ve seen it, I wonder whether Sosinsky’s book is to blame for so many Russian mathematicians overusing “any” so much? – Emil Jeřábek Nov 11 '13 at 15:21

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