Ernst Zermelo

An Approach to His Life and Work

  • Heinz Dieter Ebbinghaus
  • Volker Peckhaus

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvi
  2. Heinz-Dieter Ebbinghaus
    Pages 1-28
  3. Heinz-Dieter Ebbinghaus
    Pages 29-118
  4. Heinz-Dieter Ebbinghaus
    Pages 119-146
  5. Heinz-Dieter Ebbinghaus
    Pages 147-272
  6. Heinz-Dieter Ebbinghaus
    Pages 273-276
  7. Heinz-Dieter Ebbinghaus
    Pages 277-286
  8. Heinz-Dieter Ebbinghaus
    Pages 287-326
  9. Back Matter
    Pages 327-384

About this book


This biography sheds light on all facets of the life and the achievements of Ernst Zermelo (1871-1953). Zermelo is best-known for the statement of the axiom of choice and his axiomatization of set theory. However, he also worked in applied mathematics and mathematical physics. His dissertation, for example, promoted the calculus of variations, and he created the pivotal method in the theory of rating systems.

The presentation of Zermelo's work explores motivations, aims, acceptance, and influence. Selected proofs and information gleaned from letters add to the analysis. The description of his personality owes much to conversations with his late wife Gertrud.

This second edition provides additional information. The system of citations has been adapted to that of Zermelo's Collected Works in order to facilitate side-by-side reading and thus profit from the thorough commentaries written for the Collected Works by experts in the respective fields.

All facts presented are documented by appropriate sources. The biography contains nearly 50 photos and facsimiles.


Historical Aspects of Applied Mathematics Zermelo history of mathematical logic history of set theory mathematical physics proof set theory

Authors and affiliations

  • Heinz Dieter Ebbinghaus
    • 1
  • Volker Peckhaus
    • 2
  1. 1.Mathematisches InstitutUniversität FreiburgFreiburgGermany
  2. 2.PaderbornGermany

Bibliographic information

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