Mathematician:Andrzej Mostowski

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Polish mathematician, best known for the Mostowski Collapse Lemma.




  • Born: 1 November 1913, Lwów, in what was then Austria-Hungary
  • 1914: His father died in the war
  • Winter 1914: Went to Zakopane for a vacation but had to stay because of the war
  • 1920: Moved to Warsaw
  • 1923: Entered the Stefan Batory Gymnasium in Warsaw
  • 1930: Developed a serious illness
  • 1931: Completed studies at the Gymnasium, entered University of Warsaw
  • 1937: Studied in Vienna and Zurich
  • 1939: Awarded Ph.D. at Warsaw
  • After 1 September 1939 (invasion of Poland by Germany): became an accountant
  • 1942 to 1944: Taught in the Underground Warsaw University
  • September 1944: Married Maria Matuszewska
  • Late 1944: Escaped being sent to a concentration camp
  • 1945: Went to Cracow, where he worked at Silesian Polytechnic, then Jagellonian University
  • Jan-Sept 1946: Acting professor at Lodz
  • Sept 1946: Appointed as an acting professor at Warsaw University
  • 1947: Made an extraordinary professor
  • 1948-49: At the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton
  • 1949: Appointed as head of the division for the foundations of mathematics at the Mathematics Institute of the Polish Academy of Sciences
  • 1951: Made an ordinary professor
  • 1952: Appointed dean of the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics at Warsaw University
  • 1953: Head of the Department of Algebra
  • 1958-59: At the University of California at Berkeley
  • 1968: Ended position as head of foundations of mathematics at Polish Academy of Sciences, took up similar position at Warsaw University
  • 1969-70: At All Souls College, Oxford
  • Summer of 1975: In the United States, at Berkeley and Stanford
  • 22 August 1975: En route to Ontario, Canada, stopped in Vancouver to deliver an invited lecture at Simon Fraser University but died suddenly and unexpectedly

Theorems and Inventions


  • 1939: On the Independence of Finitenesss Definitions in a System of Logic (Ph.D. thesis)
  • 1945: Axiom of choice for finite sets (habilitation thesis for Jagellonian University)
  • 1946: On undecidable propositions in formalized systems of mathematics (Polish)
  • 1948: Mathematical Logic
  • 1952: Theory of sets (with Kazimierz Kuratowski)
  • 1953: Undecidable theories (with Alfred Tarski and Raphael Mitchel Robinson)
  • 1953: Elements of higher algebra: Volume 1 (with Marceli Stark)
  • 1954: Elements of higher algebra: Volume 2 (with Marceli Stark)
  • 1964: Widerspruchsfreiheit und Unabhängigkeit der Kontinuumhypothese (Independence and Consistency of the Continuum Hypothesis)
  • 1956: Theory of sets (2nd Edition) (with Kazimierz Kuratowski)