Édouard Goursat

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Goursat, Édouard


Born May 21, 1858, in Langeac, department of Loire; died Nov. 25, 1936, in Paris. French mathematician. Member of the Paris Academy of Sciences (1919), professor of the University of Paris (1897), and president of the French Mathematical Society.

Goursat’s major works dealt with second-order partial differential equations as well as with the theory of analytic functions. He also developed the classification of partial differential equations based on the nature of their characteristics. He posed the problem of the integration of differential equations when the boundary conditions are prescribed along the characteristics (Goursat’s problem). His three-volume Course of Mathematical Analysis is well known (1923–25; Russian translation, 2nd edition, 1933–34).