Leonhard Euler, 1707–1783 pp. 199210By J. J. Burckhardt
The Harmony of the World
Spectrum
Online ISBN: 9780883859667
Chapter DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5948/UPO9780883859667.033
Subjects: Recreational Mathematics 

Image View Text View  Enlarge Image ‹ Previous Chapter ›Next Chapter
Editors' Note: Johann Jacob Burckhardt was one of the foremost experts on Euler at the time this article was published in 1983, the bicentennial of the death of Euler. He was one of the three members of the editorial committee that produced a major Euler memoir published that year in Switzerland, Leonhard Euler 1707–1783, Beiträge zu Leben und Werk, Gedenkband des Kantons BaselStadt (Birkhäuser, 1983).
Burckhardt, a native of Basel (the birthplace of Euler), received his PhD from the University of Zürich and taught there from 1933 to 1977. For 31 years he was managing editor of the Commentarii Mathematici Helvetici and was president of the Swiss Mathematical Society 1954–56. Primarily a mathematical historian, he has also published research in the field of crystallography. In 2003 a tribute to him was published in Elemente der Mathematik, to honor him on his 100th birthday, July 13th of that year.
Here he gives a quick sketch of the life and enormous accomplishments of that greatest of Swiss mathematicians and one of the greatest scientists of all time. The November 1983 issue of the Magazine is devoted to Euler and his work, with this article on Euler's life, George Andrews on the pentagonal number theorem, Harold M. Edwards on quadratic reciprocity, Paul Erdős and coauthor Underwood Dudley on problems in number theory, and Morris Kline on series, among others. The issue was nicely illustrated with portraits, pictures of medals, title pages from Euler's own books, and a picture of a wellknown Swiss banknote with Euler's portrait.