Person: Furtwängler, Philipp
Philipp Furtwängler was a German mathematician best known for his number theory and in particular for his proof of the principal ideal theorem.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- Furtwängler attended elementary school in his home town of Elze and then he studied at the Andreanum Gymnasium in Hildesheim.
- Furtwängler attended Felix Klein's number theory course which went on for two semesters.
- Furtwängler wrote the thesis Zur Theorie der in Linearfaktoren zerlegbaren ganzzahlingen ternären kubischen Formen Ⓣ(On the theory of integers decomposable into linear factors of ternary cubic forms) and he was awarded his doctorate by the University of Göttingen for this work in 1895.
- At the University of Göttingen, Furtwängler had qualified to teach mathematics, physics, chemistry and mineralogy at secondary schools.
- Despite working at the Geodetic Institute in Potsdam, it was number theory which was Furtwängler's main research interest.
- Let us return to our description of Furtwängler's career.
- Furtwängler came to the Mathematical Institute at 8 clock in the morning and held oral examinations and colloquia.
- It was Furtwängler's lectures which turned Kurt Gödel from physics to mathematics.
- Gödel, who entered the University of Vienna in 1922, described Furtwängler's lectures as the best he had ever heard.
- Furtwängler was also a member of the examination committee for teaching in secondary schools.
- When Furtwängler gave his proof he was 61 years old, remarkably old for someone to come up with such a major result.
- Certainly these prizes were not the first honours to be given to Furtwängler.
- In the same year of 1939, the 48th volume of Monatshefte für Mathematik und Physik Ⓣ(Mathematics and physics monthly) was dedicated to Furtwängler on the occasion of his 70th birthday.
- Furtwängler's second marriage was in 1929 to Emilie Schön.
- In October 1938 Furtwängler's condition forced him to retire from his duties.
- Furtwängler's article was completed by Martin Eichler, Helmut Hasse and Wolfram Jehne.
Born 21 April 1869, Elze, Hanover, Prussia, now Germany. Died 19 May 1940, Vienna, Austria.
View full biography at MacTutor
Tags relevant for this person:
Origin Germany, Number Theory
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive