Jules Tannery

Jules Tannery (24 March 1848 – 11 December 1910) was a French mathematician, brother of the mathematician and historian of science Paul Tannery, who notably studied under Charles Hermite and was the PhD advisor of Jacques Hadamard.

Under Hermite, he received is doctorate in 1874 for his thesis Propriétés des Intégrales des Équations Différentielle Linéaires à Coefficients Variables.

Tannery discovered a surface of the fourth order of which all the geodesic lines are algebraic. He was not an inventor, however, but essentially a critic and methodologist. He once remarked, "Mathematicians are so used to their symbols and have so much fun playing with them, that it is sometimes necessary to take their toys away from them in order to oblige them to think."

He notably influenced Pierre Duhem, Paul Painlevé, Jules Drach, and Émile Borel to take up science.

His efforts were mainly directed to the study of the mathematical foundations and of the philosophical ideas implied in mathematical thinking. Tannery was "an original thinker, a successful teacher, and a writer endowed with an unusually clear, brilliant and attractive style."[1]

Jules Tannery
Jules Tannery
Jules Tannery (1848-1910). Photo by A. Gerschel & Sons (c. 1866).
Born 24 March 1848
Mantes-sur-Seine, France
Died 11 December 1910 (aged 62)
Paris, France
Residence France
Nationality French
Alma mater École Normale Supérieure
Known for Philosophy of mathematics
Scientific career
Fields Mathematician
Institutions École Normale Supérieure
Université de Paris
Doctoral advisor Charles Hermite
Doctoral students Albert Châtelet
Jacques Hadamard
Influenced Paul Tannery
Paul Painlevé
Jules Drach
Émile Borel
Élie Cartan
Brother of Paul Tannery



  1. ^ G. B. Mathews (1910) Jules Tannery Nature 85:175 (#2145)
  • George Sarton, "Paul, Jules, and Marie Tannery (with a note on Grégoire Wyrouboff)," Isis, Vol. 38, No. 1/2. (Nov., 1947), pp. 33–51.

External links

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.