Who was Karl Weierstrass?


Quick Answer

Karl Theodor Wilhelm Weierstrass is referred to as the father of modern analysis. A German mathematician born on Oct. 31, 1815 in Ennigerloh, he attended several universities and was certified as a teacher. During his studies and teaching career, he became enthralled with elliptic functions. Weierstrass is renowned for his contributions to Abelian functions.

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Full Answer

Weierstrass is considered the first mathematician to organize the representation of the function by a power series. In 1854, Weierstrass became a prominent mathematician by publishing a paper that provided the solution of inversion of hyper elliptic integrals.

Weierstrass used his methods of analysis to reform the study of calculus of variations. His studies contributed to the way that modern mathematicians study the calculus of variations.

He concerned himself with the integrity of calculus with respect to concepts such as limits, continuity, convergence and differentiability. His dedication to reforming the continuity of a function led him to find solutions for several unproven theorems in calculus that existed. He wrote validated proofs for the intermediate value theorem, the Bolzano–Weierstrass theorem and Heine–Borel theorem.

Weierstrass taught and influenced Edmund Husserl, Sofia Kovalevskaya, Gösta Mittag-Leffler, Hermann Schwarz and Carl Johannes Thomae during his teaching career. He died on Feb. 19, 1897 in Berlin.

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