Georg Cantor, German mathematician

Georg Cantor, German mathematician

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Credit: EMILIO SEGRE VISUAL ARCHIVES/AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF PHYSICS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: Georg Cantor (1845-1918), German mathematician. Born in St Petersburg, Russia, Cantor studied in Berlin, Germany, before becoming Professor of Mathematics at Halle in 1877. He did important work on classical analysis, using Fourier series to develop a theory of irrational numbers. Cantor formulated the theory of sets, upon which modern mathematical analysis is based. His seemingly counter-intuitive proofs included transcendental and infinite numbers, and countable and uncountable sets. He was awarded the Royal Society's Sylvester Medal in 1904. Cantor retired in 1913, dying in poverty during the First World War.

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