Person: Sós, Vera
Vera Sós is a Hungarian mathematician who specialises in number theory and combinatorics. She worked at the Alfréd Rényi Institute of Mathematics and has won many prizes including the Tibor Szele Medal (1974) and the Széchenyi Prize (1997).
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- Vera studied at the Jewish High School on Abonyi Street in Budapest and it was at this school that her passion for mathematics developed.
- The biggest influence on Sós at the Abonyi Street High School was Tibor Gallai.
- Six of them became mathematicians and one of them, Vera T Sós, became one of the leading mathematicians in Hungary.
- Gallai gave Sós university textbooks to read while she was at school, including the book by Konrad Knopp, Theorie und Anwendung der Unendlichen Reihen Ⓣ(Theory and application of infinite rings) (1922).
- Rózsa Péter was always interested in talented young mathematicians and she tested Sós out by giving her some logical problems.
- She wanted to find out not how much mathematics Sós knew but rather how she thought.
- Sós graduated from the Abonyi Street High School in 1948 and entered the Mathematics-Physics Faculty of Eötvös Loránd University.
- At Eötvös Loránd University, Sós's teachers included Lipót Fejér, Frigyes Riesz, György Hajós (1912-1972), Paul Turán, Pál Szász (1901-1957), and Alfréd Rényi.
- Sós made a geometry presentation to this Congress.
- Vera Sós is known as an outstanding expert in number theory and combinatorics but so far we have not described any contributions she has made to these areas.
- Her first publication was 'V T Sós, Solution of problem 28, Matematikai Lapok 3 (1952), 91'.
- Sós, Turán and their colleague Tamás Kovári worked on the problem and, although they did not solve it, they made substantial progress and published the paper 'Tamás Kovári, Vera T Sós and Pál Turán, On a problem of K Zarankiewicz, Colloquium Mathematicum 1 (3) (1954), 50-57'.
- This was the beginning of Sós's work on graph theory and combinatorics.
- This time it was Sós who went to Poland where she talked to Hugo Steinhaus who told her about a problem on Diophantine approximation.
- Sós immediately began working on the problem sitting in a cafe in Krakow, and there proved her first results in number theory.
- Sós had produced far more results than are required for a thesis and she was awarded the degrees Doctor Rherum Naturarum from Eötvös Loránd University, Candidate of the Mathematical Sciences from the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, and Doctor of the Mathematical Sciences from the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in 1957 for A geometric treatment of continued fractions and its application to the theory of diophantine approximation (Hungarian).
- Discussions with Erdős did not lead to any further papers on combinatorics by Sós for a few years, and she continued to work on number theory.
- In 1962, however, there appeared the 3-author paper On a problem in the theory of graphs co-authored by Erdős, Rényi and Sós.
- In 1961 Sós began teaching a combinatorics course at Eötvös Loránd University and, in the first year she taught it, Béla Bollobás took the course.
- The first, published in 1970, was the joint Erdős and Sós paper Some remarks on Ramsey's and Turán's theorem which appeared in the Proceeding of the Colloquium on Combinatorial Mathematics which had been held at Balatonfüred, a resort town on the northern shore of Lake Balaton in Hungary, in August 1969.
- In 1965 she initiated and launched the famous weekly Hajnal-Sós seminar at the Mathematical Institute of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
- Since the mid sixties, Sós has been the driving force behind the periodic international conferences in combinatorics under the auspices of the Bolyai Society.
- in July 1976, at the meeting on combinatorics at Orsay in Paris, Vera Sós gave me the terrible news (which she had known for six years) that Paul had leukaemia.
Born 11 September 1930, Budapest, Hungary.
View full biography at MacTutor
Tags relevant for this person:
Origin Hungary, Women
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive