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Biography of Georg Cantor

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Mathematics
Wordcount: 1231 words Published: 18th May 2020

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Georg Cantor was born in St Petersburg, Russia. His birthday was March 3, 1845. Him and his family lived in St Petersburg Russia until he was 11 years old. They moved to Frankfurt Germany. They moved there because dad’s health was getting bad so he couldn’t take cold winters.

  His parents where Danish. His mother’s name was Maria Anna Bohm and she was catholic and his dad name Georg Waldemar Cantor. His dad was Protestantism. Georg Cantor was baptized Lutheran and was devoted Christian his entire life. His family was very religious and was dedicated.

       He was raised in cultural and intellectual curiosity. His childhood was constant into math. His father and mother weren’t happy about his career his dad wanted him to be an engineer. His childhood was about math even thou his family disagreed of it. He later went to college to be mathematician and physics and philosophy.

       Georg Cantor passed away in January 6, 1918 in Halle Germany. He passed away in a university of mental clinic. He had a mental illness. He has several episodes of depression. They didn’t know exactly what mental issues he had many believed it was bipolar.

       Georg Cantor parents where educated. His father Georg Cantor had a love for art and culture. He also had a flourishing business in several countries. Cantor mother Maria was an accomplished musician. Cantor inherited music from his family he was an amazing violinist. Georg Cantor didn’t have siblings that I could find. I only seen stuff about his mother and father.

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        George was always a bright and talented young man who came from a background of talented musicians. Georg father became ill and he started trying to find himself after years of objection from his father, when he was about 15 years of age. The family started moving around and George attended different private schools in Darmstadt first and then at Wiesbaden. Cantor overcame the objection of being an engineer from his father and decided that he would go a different route in life and do what he really loved and was passionate about.

      In 1860 Cantor graduated from high school and he received an outstanding report. Georg had brilliant and outstanding skills in mathematics and trigonometry. George attended the Höhere Gewerbeschule in Darmstadt in 1860 and entered the Polytechnic of Zürich in 1862. Georg only attended Höhere because his father really wanted him to become an engineer, but in 1862 Georg got the courage to ask his father if he could attend the University to study mathematics instead of engineering and he was excited when his father said yes.

       A little after Georg’s father passed away in 1863 he attended the University of Berlin and Gottingen where he studied number theory, and in 1867 Georg received his Doctorate degree. Georg continued his studies and teachings in number theory but he started to gain more interest in trigonometry.

By 1873 Cantors math theory and trigonometry discoveries were outstanding! By 1873, “Both proved the ability to count rational numbers and proved that every interval in a sequence contains infinitely many transcendental numbers.” By 1879 George Cantor was considered to be one of the most extraordinary professors and mathematicians.  

Georg Cantors’ love of mathematics persuaded him to pursue a career in the field. Above all, his talents emerged before his 15th birthday, while studying at private schools and in gymnasiums. His father who wanted him to be an engineer, eventually let him go on to study mathematics. His father’s approval was very important to him. (Dauben,1990).

 Georg Cantor went on to the University of Zurich for a brief period of time. He then transferred to the University of Berlin in 1863, to specialize in mathematics, philosophy and physics. In 1866, he attended the University of Gottingen. He received his doctorate degree in 1867. He was made a faculty member of Halle University in 1869 and was promoted to full professor in 1879. (Dauben,1990).

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George’s first ten papers were on number theory, he then turned his attention to calculus, solving a difficult open problem on the uniqueness of the representation of a function by trigonometric series. Between 1874 and 1884 marks the real origin of set theory, which is a fundamental part of modern mathematics, and its basic concepts are still used throughout all the various branches of mathematics, He is most known for his contributions as being the first mathematician to comprehend the meaning of infinity and to give it mathematical substance.

 Galileo tried to confront and debunk his theory and reluctantly concluded that concepts like “less, equals and greater” could only be applied to finite sets of numbers, and not to infinite sets. Cantor did beg to differ. By Cantor comparing the infinity set of rational numbers with the infinite set of natural numbers by a procedure of listing and enumerating all the rational numbers then pairing each rational in the list with the successive natural numbers, he showed that the rational numbers are countable and that the infinity of rational numbers in the same size as the infinity of natural numbers. Cantor coined the term “transfinite” to help distinguish these various levels of infinite numbers from an absolute infinity.

 In the 1880s, Cantor a strong resistance regarding his bold discoveries. His mentors, professors and some theologians saw Cantor’s work as inconsistent to their view of the nature of God. Cantor himself was a deeply religious man, and he noted paradoxes thrown up by his own work, but some went further and saw it as the deliberate obliteration of the understandable and rational foundation on which the whole of mathematics was based.



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