17 Fascinating Facts About the Number 17

As per MIT research, when people randomly select a number between 1 and 20, the number 17 is the most commonly chosen number.

Throughout history, people have associated various facts with numbers, including numerology, superstitions, and important dates. Some numbers hold a significant meaning in different cultures and beliefs. Today, we will explore 17 intriguing facts about the number 17.

MIT research has confirmed that 17 is the most common randomly chosen number between 1 and 20. The same result has been reported multiple times, indicating that this is not a coincidence.

17 is the seventh prime number, meaning it can only be divided by itself and the number 1.

Not only is the number 17 a prime number, but it also holds a unique property – if you add the first four prime numbers, the sum is 17. Additionally, it is the only prime number made up of four consecutive prime numbers, namely 2, 3, 5, and 7.

In French, Catalan, and Italian languages, 17 is the first compound number, represented by “dix-sept,” “disset,” and “diciassette,” respectively, which translate to 10+7.

When a person turns 17 in the UK, they can learn to drive both a car and a van.

Similarly, in the US, turning 17 offers several new-found freedoms, such as applying for a private pilot license, renting R-rated movies, enlisting in the armed forces (with parental consent), and renting or buying M-rated video games.

The number 17 is a popular song title used by many famous artists, including Prince, Kings of Leon, The Smashing Pumpkins, Jimmy Eat World, Stevie Nicks, and the Sex Pistols.

The Beatles’ song “I Saw Her Standing There” was initially titled “Seventeen.”

The villain in the famous Japanese manga and anime series Dragonball Z is Android 17, a cyborg character introduced in Season 3 of the show.

The periodic table of elements features 18 groups, and Group 17 is made up of halogens, including five chemically similar elements. Chlorine, one of the halogens, has an atomic number of 17.

Followers of Islam perform 17 raka’ahs, a set of prayers and movements, during each of their five daily prayers.

While many people consider the number 13 to be unlucky, in Italy, the number 17 is deemed unlucky. This superstition dates back to the time of the Romans, where 17 in Roman numerals is XVII, which rearranged spells VIXI in Latin, meaning “I have lived,” or “I am dead.” As a result, some Italian airlines and hotels do not have a 17th row or room.

Pelé, also known as Edson Arantes do Nascimento, holds the record as the youngest person to have played in a Football (Soccer) World Cup final at just 17 years old. Malala Yousafzai, at the same age, became the youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2014 for advocating for the rights of young women and children to have fair access to education. Legends say that the god of death and resurrection, Osiris, died on the 17th day of a month in ancient Egyptian mythology. A solvable game of Sudoku must have 17 different clues. Haiku, a form of Japanese poetry, consists of three lines with a strict syllable count: five, seven, and five, totaling 17. Although 17 is often seen as the last age before adulthood in many countries, it is a number that appears frequently in various contexts.


1. What is the significance of the number 17?

The number 17 holds a special place in mathematics, science, and culture. It is a prime number, meaning it can only be divided by 1 and itself. In geometry, a regular heptadecagon has 17 sides. In the periodic table, chlorine, which has 17 protons, is the 17th element. In the Tarot, the 17th card is The Star, representing hope and inspiration.

2. Is there any superstition associated with the number 17?

In Italy, the number 17 is considered unlucky because when written in Roman numerals, XVII, it can be rearranged to read “VIXI,” which translates to “I have lived,” implying death. In Brazil, the number 17 is associated with good luck and is often used in lottery games.

3. What is the significance of 17 in sports?

17 is the jersey number of several legendary athletes, including footballer Lionel Messi, basketball player John Havlicek, and baseball player Mark Grace. In NASCAR, the number 17 car has won the Daytona 500 three times.

4. What is the connection between the number 17 and the moon?

The moon is approximately 17% the size of Earth. Additionally, the moon’s diameter is 3,474 km, and its average distance from Earth is 238,855 miles, both of which add up to 17.

5. What is the significance of the number 17 in religion?

In Christianity, the number 17 is associated with the resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is believed that Jesus rose from the dead on the 17th day of Nisan, which is the first month of the Hebrew calendar. In Islam, the 17th chapter of the Quran discusses the story of the Children of Israel and their journey to the Promised Land.

6. What is the history of the number 17?

The ancient Egyptians used a base 10 system, but also had symbols for numbers up to 1 million. The symbol for 17 was a combination of the hieroglyphs for 10 and 7. In ancient Rome, the number 17 was considered unlucky because it was the sum of the letters in the Latin word “vixi” (I have lived), which was used to signify death. In Norse mythology, the god Loki is bound with 17 chains.

7. What are some interesting mathematical properties of 17?

17 is a prime number, meaning it can only be divided by 1 and itself. It is also a Fermat prime, which means that it can be written in the form 2^(2^n) + 1. Additionally, if you take the sum of the digits of any multiple of 17 and keep repeating the process until you get a single digit, the result will always be 8.

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