Eugène Ehrhart died on january the 17th 2000
The scientific community has lost an exceptional man
Lauréat de l'Académie des Sciences
Décoré de la Légion d'Honneur
Commandeur des Palmes Académiques
Eugène Ehrhart was born in 1906 at Guebwiller (Haut-Rhin, France), april the 29th. He was a mathematic teacher in several lycées (french high schools) and did a lot of research just for his personnal pleasure. He obtained his PhD thesis "Sur un problème de géométrie diophantienne linéaire" in 1966, urged by some university colleagues. He is still publishing some papers.
I was very honored meeting him several times while i was working on his well-known results on Ehrhart polynomials. The first time i saw him, it was really surprising to see a so enthusiast 90 years aged man, still doing some researches on funny math problems, and very pleased that other scientific disciplines are also using his works. My questions always get a rapid answer. He came at my seminar and it was himself who answered the questions of the audience.
Here is his curriculum vitae:
- 1906: E. Ehrhart is born. His parents are shopkeepers and he already has a sister born in 1903.
- 1912-1918: He goes to the German school of Guebwiller, since at this time, this part of France is german (first world war).
- 1918-1925: He goes to the middle and high school of Guebwiller, at the same time as a future physics Nobel prize: Kastler.
- 1925-1926: Advanced maths class preparing at the lycée Kléber of Strasbourg, where he will be a teacher later.
- 1928: He gets his high school degree.
- 1926-1930: University of Strasbourg.
- 1930-1932: Military service.
- 1932-1934: He works for the first time as a maths teacher in the lycée Poincaré of Nancy.
- 1934-1936: Teacher in the middle school of Toul.
- 1936-1939: Teacher in the lycée Faidherbe of Lille.
- 1940: He is getting married and has his first son named Jean.
- 1940-1945: Teacher in the lycée of Metz.
- 1948: He gets his highest competitive examination for teachers in France (agrégation).
- 1945-1968: Teacher in the lycée Kléber of Strasbourg, in the advanced class preparing for the St-Cyr military Grande École.
- 1959: Prize of the French Sciences Academy for his works on geometry.
- 1961-1968: He gives some lectures at the economic sciences University of Strasbourg.
- 1963: He gets on secondment at the C.N.R.S. in order to work on its PhD thesis.
- 1966: He gets his PhD thesis Sur un problème de géométrie diophantienne linéaire.
- 1968-1971: Teacher in the military school of Strasbourg, where he gets much time to do some researches.
- 1970: He is made a member of the Legion of Honour.
- 1971: End of his teacher carrier, he gets retired.
- 1974: Second prize of the French Sciences Academy for his works on diophantine equations.
- 1978: Commander of the academic prize, decoration for services to education in France.
One day, he gave me a copy of a poem he wrote when he was about 14 years old (in french of course).
He has a gift for drawing celebrities.
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