Many scholars believe that 666 won out because it is derived from a more complex formula and also because it's simply more catchy. "Six hundred sixty-six looks like a more memorable number than 616," said David Parker, a New Testament professor at the University of Birmingham in England. "Six hundred sixty-six steadily took over, and the alternative was forgotten until modern scholars in the past 200 years started to look at more manuscripts and to find ones that had been lost.