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CNRS Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1 Université Jean Monnet - Saint-Etienne École Centrale de Lyon Institut National des Sciences Appliquées Université de Lyon

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Home > Research teams

History of Mathematics

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The main research directions are the following:

Edition of the comprehensive work of D’Alembert
History of number theory in the 19th and 20th centuries, history of number geometry
History of mathematical leisure
History and philosophy of group theory
History of Japanese mathematics

Detailed presentation

  • Edition of the comprehensive work of D’Alembert (Pierre Crépel, Fabrice Ferlin, Alexandre Guilbaud, Guillaume Jouve, Christophe Schmit)

The team is responsible for the publication of series III of the comprehensive work of D’Alembert. This series is devoted to late scientific works, and contains 9 volumes of mathematical Opuscules (1761-1783) and 4 volumes of miscellanea; each volume is about 600 pages. We also participate to the edition of the other series, in particular the Traité de dynamique et des mémoires sur les cordes vibrantes :

  • History of mathematical leisure (Nicolas Pelay)

Have mathematics always meant (except for a few "scholars") austerity, pain, selection tool? Or can fun, links with life be also associated with them? These questions are not new. We revisit them through the history of mathematical and physical leisure, in particular with the various editions of Récréations by Ozanam (first édition 1694).

  • History of number theory in the 19th and 20th centuries, history of number geometry (Sébastien Gauthier)

We are particularly interested in the links between number theory and geometry (and even with other fields of mathematics), and in the definition of mathematical fieds.

  • History and philosophy of group theory (Christophe Eckes, Bertrand Rémy, Amaury Thuillier)

The period we cover starts with the work of Cauchy on substitutions (1812-1815), and terminates with the works of Hermann Weyl devoted to linear represenation of semi-simple complex Lie groups (1925-1926). The main other studied authors are Galois, Klein, Lie, Frobenius, Schur, Haar, Minkowski.

  • History of Japanese mathematics (Marion Cousin, Kenji Iohara)

The Meiji era (1868-1912) represents a major change in Japanese society, which is mainly due to the recovery of international relations after more than 200 years of political and commercial isolation. We study the consequences of these events on the mathematical practice, and particulary on the teaching of geometry.


  • History and Philosophy of mathematics Seminar: on Fridays afternoon.
  • Emmy Noether Days: 11 and 12 March 2010.


 Sébastien Gauthier   +33 (0)472448307   (UCBL-Braconnier  115)    
 François Lê   +33 (0)472448307   (UCBL-Braconnier  115)    
 Michel Mizony   +33 (0)472448556   (UCBL-Braconnier  116)    
 Yannick Vincent   +33 (0)47.......   (INSA-Vinci  INSA)    

Nombre de personnes : 4

Some selected publications

  • Jean Le Rond D’Alembert : Opuscules mathématiques tome I (1761), Edition établie sous la direction de P. Crépel, A. Guilbaud et G. Jouve, Paris, CNRS-Editions (Oeuvres Complètes de D’Alembert, vol. III/1), 2008
  • collectif : L’octant et la plume : Grandjean de Fouchy, astronome et secrétaire perpétuel de l’Académie des sciences, Revue d’histoire des sciences, Tome 61-1 (janvier-juin 2008)
  • collectif : D’Alembert, mathématicien des lumières, Les génies de la science (n°39, mai-juillet 2009)


Head of the team : Sébastien Gauthier
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