Bartel Leendert van der Waerden  

Born 
February 2, 1903 Amsterdam, Netherlands 
Died 
January 12, 1996 (aged 92) ZÃ¼rich, Switzerland 
Nationality  Netherlands 
Fields  Mathematics 
Institutions  University of Leipzig University of Zurich 
Alma mater  University of Amsterdam University of GÃ¶ttingen 
Doctoral advisor  Hendrick de Vries 
Known for  Van der Waerden's
theorem Van der Waerden number Van der Waerden test 
Influences  Emmy Noether 
Bartel Leendert van der Waerden (February 2, 1903, Amsterdam, Netherlands â€“ January 12, 1996, ZÃ¼rich, Switzerland) was a Dutch mathematician.
Van der Waerden learned advanced mathematics at the University of Amsterdam and the University of GÃ¶ttingen, from 1919 until 1926. He was much influenced by Emmy Noether at GÃ¶ttingen. Amsterdam awarded him a Ph.D. for a thesis on algebraic geometry, supervised by Hendrick de Vries. GÃ¶ttingen awarded him the habilitation in 1928.
In his 27th year, Van der Waerden published his Algebra, an influential twovolume treatise on abstract algebra, still cited, and perhaps the first treatise to treat the subject as a comprehensive whole. This work systematized an ample body of research by Emmy Noether, David Hilbert, Richard Dedekind, and Emil Artin. In the following year, 1931, he was appointed professor at the University of Leipzig.
The Third Reich made life difficult for Van der Waerden as a foreigner teaching in Germany, but he refused to give up his Dutch nationality. He filled the chair in mathematics at the University of Amsterdam, 1948â€“1951, then moved to the University of Zurich, where he spent the rest of his career, supervising more than 40 Ph.D. students.
Van der Waerden is mainly remembered for his work on abstract algebra. He also wrote on algebraic geometry, topology, number theory, geometry, combinatorics, analysis, probability and statistics, and quantum mechanics (he and Heisenberg had been colleagues at Leipzig). In his later years, he turned to the history of mathematics and science. His historical writings include Ontwakende wetenschap (1950), which was translated into English as Science Awakening (1954), Geometry and Algebra in Ancient Civilizations (1983), and A History of Algebra (1985).
