Person: Walfisz, Arnold
Arnold Walfisz was a Polish mathematician who worked in analytic number theory.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- Arnold grew up in Warsaw where he attended the Sixth State Gymnasium and was awarded his Abitur in 1909.
- Walfisz preferred to go to Germany for his university studies.
- Walfisz, however, was not able to continue his education for the duration of the war, only being able to resume his studies in 1918.
- Walfisz was not in a strong position to obtain a university post.
- Walfisz went to Wiesbaden after the award of his thesis and lived there for five years during which he produced many fine papers.
- Walfisz had wanted to return to Göttingen and work with Edmund Landau.
- Indeed, Landau was also very keen to have Walfisz as an assistant so made application to the Rockefeller Foundation for financial support.
- This reason was not in any way Walfisz's fault, yet it was he who would be the loser.
- However, it was certainly true that Walfisz would have had no "suitable place for him on his return from abroad".
- Many of the papers that Walfisz published after returning to Poland give his affiliation as Warsaw but his address as Radosc.
- In 1935 Walfisz, together with Salomon Lubelski, founded the number theory journal Acta Arithmetica.
- In the same year Walfisz and Chowla had co-authored the paper On a trigonometric sum published by the London Mathematical Society.
- He influenced the Georgian University of Tbilisi to make Walfisz the offer of a position there.
- In October 1936 Walfisz accepted and began a career in Tbilisi.
- Taking up permanent residence in Tbilisi in October 1936, Walfisz was appointed as a Senior Researcher at Tbilisi Mathematical Institute and as Professor of Mathematics at Tbilisi State University.
- The favourite field of research of Arnold Walfisz was the theory of integral points in ellipsoids, to which he devoted about thirty papers and a monograph.
- The beautiful theory is due to a sequence of celebrated mathematicians, including Landau, Hardy, Jarnik, Vinogradov, van der Corput and, most of all, Professor Walfisz himself.
- Walfisz published further monographs: Pell's equation (Russian) (1952); Lattice points in many-dimensional spheres (Russian) (1960); and Weylsche Exponentialsummen in der neueren Zahlentheorie Ⓣ(Weyl exponential sums in modern number theory) (1963).
- We mentioned above that Walfisz co-founded the journal Acta Arithmetica, and served on the editorial board, when he was working in Warsaw.
- However, after the Polish Academy of Sciences was founded in 1952, the Academy took over publication of the journal and invited Walfisz to join the editorial board.
- Also worthy of mention is Edmund Landau's monograph "Diophantische Gleichungen mit endlich vielen Lösungen", which was published in 1959 by the German scientific press in Berlin (DDR) with a large supplement by Walfisz.
- This appeared under the title "Ausgewählte Abhandlungen zur Gitterpunktlehre" Ⓣ(Selected Essays on the grid point rules) with an extensive commentary by Walfisz.
- We must not give the impression that all of Walfisz's mathematical contributions were in number theory for he also contributed papers on the theory of ideals in rings, on function theory, and the theory of modular forms.
Born 2 July 1892, Warsaw, Russian Empire (now Poland). Died 29 May 1962, Tbilisi, Georgia.
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Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive