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Carl Louis Ferdinand von Lindemann

Carl Louis Ferdinand von Lindemann (1852 - 1939) was a German mathematician, noted for his proof, published in 1882, that &pi is a transcendental number, i.e., it is not a zero of any polynomial with rational coefficients. His methods were similar to those used nine years earlier by Charles Hermite to show that e, the base of natural logarithms, is transcendental. Before the publication of Lindemann's proof, it was known that if π is transcendental, then the ancient and celebrated problem of squaring the circle by straightedge and compass could not be solved.

See also Lindemann-Weierstrass theorem.

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