The Transmission of Noether’s Ideas, From Bessel-Hagen to Hill, 1921–1951

Part of the Sources and Studies in the History of Mathematics and Physical Sciences book series (SHMP)


For some thirty years after the publication of Noether’s Invariante Variationsproble- me, this work disappeared from the consciousness of all but a handful of writers of mathematics, mechanics and theoretical physics, while it would slowly re-emerge in later years. Three notable exceptions on which we comment below are the article by Erich Bessel-Hagen [1921], the treatise on the theory of invariants by Weitzenb¨ock [1923], and the handbook of Courant and Hilbert [1924], after which we found only two articles that cite Noether, both in the literature of the 1930s on quantum mechanics. Then, Hill’s article of 1951 initiated the diffusion of Noether’s results, but provided only a summary of a very restricted case of her first theorem.


English Translation Conformal Invariance Integral Invariant Encyclopedia Article Invariant Variational Problem 
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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre de Mathématiques Laurent SchwartzÉcole PolytechniquePalaiseauFrance

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