Law of small numbers
The law of small numbers may refer to
- the Poisson distribution. Sometimes probability distributions are called laws, and the use of that name for this distribution originated in Ladislaus Bortkiewicz's book The Law of Small Numbers;
- the tendency for an initial segment of data to show some bias that drops out later (one example in number theory being the Kummer conjecture on cubic Gauss sums);
- the occurrence of mathematical coincidences that are no more than some expression of a pigeonhole principle.
Richard Guy has written on topics of this kind.