**Naum Il'ich Akhiezer** was a Soviet mathematician whose main work was on function theory and approximation theory. He also produced works on the history of mathematics.

- The town of Cherikov, called Cherykau in Belarusian, had around 5500 inhabitants when Naum Il'ich was born.
- Naum Il'ich attended the local Gymnasium in Cherikov, graduating in 1918.
- Akhiezer studied at the Kiev Institute of Public Education, entering in 1922 on a three-year course of study.
- Akhiezer and Krein became friends and around ten years later collaborated on mathematical projects.
- Akhiezer graduated from the Kiev Institute of Public Education in 1924.
- In addition to his school teaching, at this time Akhiezer was assisting Dmitry Aleksandrovich Grave by conducting practical classes for him at one of the Higher Educational Institutes in Kiev.
- Akhiezer's research was on the theory of functions of a complex variable and its applications to aerodynamics.
- In the first of these papers Akhiezer solved the problem of finding the polynomial with three fixed coefficients deviating least from zero on a given interval.
- From 1933 Akhiezer worked at Kharkov University.
- Akhiezer had never been awarded a doctorate since academic degrees of Master of Science and Doctor of Science had been abolished in the USSR in 1918.
- However, they were reintroduced in 1934 and, in 1936 Akhiezer was awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Physical-Mathematical Sciences.
- In 1937 Akhiezer, working with his friend M G Krein, solved the extremal problem for the class of differentiable periodic functions.
- Akhiezer continued to work on this topic and was later to solve the extremal problem for the class of analytic functions.
- He persuaded several mathematicians including Akhiezer to join the Institute in the early 1960's and Akhiezer became head of the Department of the Theory of Functions at this Institute.
- Akhiezer's later work, in addition to that on the theory of moments, included joint work with Sergei Bernstein on completeness of sets of polynomials.
- Akhiezer wrote 150 papers and 10 books, one of which was the important Theory of Operators in Hilbert Space.
- His great personal charm, sparkling wit and cheerfulness, and his open and friendly attitude towards the young, have always attracted talented young people to Akhiezer, a great number of whom have developed into good mathematicians who are working in various cities of the USSR.

Born 6 March 1901, Cherikov, Ruussian Empire (now Belarus). Died 3 June 1980, Kharkov, USSR.

View full biography at MacTutor

Origin Belarus

**Oâ€™Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F**: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive