About this book
This little book is conceived as a service to mathematicians attending the 1998 International Congress of Mathematicians in Berlin. It presents a comprehensive, condensed overview of mathematical activity in Berlin, from Leibniz almost to the present day (without, however, including biographies of living mathematicians). Since many towering figures in mathematical history worked in Berlin, most of the chapters of this book are concise biographies. These are held together by a few survey articles presenting the overall development of entire periods of scientific life at Berlin. Overlaps between various chapters and differences in style between the chap ters were inevitable, but sometimes this provided opportunities to show different aspects of a single historical event - for instance, the Kronecker-Weierstrass con troversy. The book aims at readability rather than scholarly completeness. There are no footnotes, only references to the individual bibliographies of each chapter. Still, we do hope that the texts brought together here, and written by the various authors for this volume, constitute a solid introduction to the history of Berlin mathematics.