# Harmonic series (mathematics)

In mathematics, the harmonic series is the divergent infinite series

${\displaystyle \sum _{n=1}^{\infty }{\frac {1}{n}}=1+{\frac {1}{2}}+{\frac {1}{3}}+{\frac {1}{4}}+{\frac {1}{5}}+\cdots .}$

Its name derives from the concept of overtones, or harmonics in music: the wavelengths of the overtones of a vibrating string are 1/2, 1/3, 1/4, etc., of the string's fundamental wavelength. Every term of the series after the first is the harmonic mean of the neighboring terms; the phrase harmonic mean likewise derives from music.