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Giacinto Morera (born Novara, 18 July 1856 - died Turin, 8 February 1909), was an Italian engineer and mathematician. He is remembered for Morera's theorem in the theory of functions of a complex variables and for his work in the theory of linear elasticity.

Biography

Life

He was born in Novara on 18 July 1856, from a whealty family: his father was a rich merchant. Tricomi (1962) states that this occurrence eased him in his studies after the laurea: however, he was an extraordinary hard worker and he widely used this professional skill in his researches[1]. After studiyng in Turin he went to Pavia, Pisa and Leipzig: in 1886 he went to Genova, living here for the next 14 years. From 1900 to his death he went back to Turin: he died of pneumonia on 8 February 1909[2].

Education and academic career

He earned his laurea in engineering in 1878, and his laurea in mathematics in 1879, both from the Politecnico di Torino[3]: he followed there the courses of Enrico d'Ovidio, Angelo Genocchi and Francesco Siacci. In particular he acknowledged this last one as his master[4]. After graduating, he followed several advanced courses: he studied in Pavia under Eugenio Beltrami and Felice Casorati, in Pisa under Enrico Betti and Ulisse Dini and in Leipzig under Adolph Mayer and Felix Klein[5]. In 1886, after a competitive examination by a judging commission, he became professor of rational mechanics at the University of Genova: he lived there for 15 years, serving also as a dean and as a rector[6]. In 1900 he was invited to the chair of rational mechanics at University of Turin, a position left open by Vito Volterra[7]. In 1908 he passed to the chair of "Meccanica Superiore" and was elected as dean of the Faculty of Sciences.

Honours

He was member of the Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei (corresponding member in 1896, then national member in 1907)[8] and of the Accademia delle Scienze di Torino (elected on 9 February 1902)[9].

Work

Una quantità di quistioni egli chiarì, semplificò o perfezionò, portando quasi sempre il contributo di vedute ingegnose ed originali. Talchè la sua produzione scientifica può dirsi critica nel senso più largo e fecondo, cioè non dedicata allo studio di minuziosi particolari, ma alla penetrazione e soluzione delle quistioni più difficili e complicate. Questa tendenza del suo ingegno si rivelò anche in un carattere esteriore di molte sue pubblicazioni, che egli presentò in forma di lavori brevi e concettosi; dei quali poi particolarmente si compiaceva, ed in conformità del suo carattere sincero, la sua compiacenza non si tratteneva dal manifestare apertamente[10].

—Carlo Somigliana in (Somigliana 1909, p. 192)


See also

* Linear elasticity
* Morera's theorem
* Morera stress functions


Notes

1. ^ According to references (Fichera 1979, p. 14) and (Somigliana, p. 192), while not gifted by a strong inventiveness, he nevertheless approached many difficult questions, giving original views that simplified considerably the theories he studied.
2. ^ Tricomi (1962) refers that he died in few days, notwithstanding his strong constitution.
3. ^ According to Tricomi (1962).
4. ^ According to Somigliana (1909, p. 191).
5. ^ According to reference (Somigliana 1909, p. 191). Since Adolph Mayer and Felix Klein were teaching in universities outside Leipzig, it is not clear from the reference if the courses Morera followed in Germany were privately held or were advanced university couses.
6. ^ According to Tricomi (1962), he served the University of Genova as a rector for two times.
7. ^ Note that there is a discrepancy between the content of the two sources (Somigliana 1909) and (Tricomi 1962): the first one states that he lived in Genova for 14 years, while the second one states that the same lapse of time is 15 years. Considering that Vito Volterra went to Rome in 1910, the version of the first reference was followed.
8. ^ According to reference (Comitato Nazionale per il IV Centenario della Fondazione dell'Accademia dei Lincei (1603-2003) 2002)
9. ^ Reference (Cossa & et al. 1902, p. 252) give a brief description of his election as a resident member ("socio residente").
10. ^ An English translation reads more or less as follows:-"He cleared, simplified or perfected, a number of questions, bringing almost always the (personal) contribution of ingenious and original views. Therefore his scientific production can be defined a critical review in the wider, prolific sense, not aimed to the study of meticolous particulars, but to the understanding and solution of the most difficult and complex questions. This tendency of his skill revealed itself in the formal character of many of his publications, that he presented in the form of brief, pregnant works; he was particularly satisfied of them, and according to his sincere nature, his satisfaction did not refrain to manifest frankly".


Bibliography

* Comitato Nazionale per il IV Centenario della Fondazione dell'Accademia dei Lincei (1603-2003) (2002), Ritratti. Giacinto Morera, http://www.lincei-celebrazioni.it/archivio_fotografico/ritratti_foto57.html, retrieved July 3, 2010 .
* Cossa, Alfonso; et al. (February 9, 1902), "Adunanza del 9 febbraio 1902. Classe di Scienze fisiche matematiche e naturali", Atti della Reale Accademia delle Scienze di Torino. 37: 251–252, archived from the original on 2009-03-05, http://www.archive.org/stream/attidellarealeac37real#page/250/mode/2up (in Italian).
* Fichera, Gaetano (1979), "Il contributo italiano alla teoria matematica dell'elasticità (The Italian contribution to the mathematical theory of elasticity)", Rendiconti del Circolo Matematico di Palermo, Serie II XXVIII (1): 5–26, doi:10.1007/BF02849579, Zbl 0433.73002, http://www.springerlink.com/content/h2654310v2120125/?p=6634b993706c45ca88bcadb8587be64b&pi=24 (in Italian).
* Somigliana, Carlo (December 1909), "Giacinto Morera", Il Nuovo Cimento, Serie V 17 (1): 191–194, doi:10.1007/BF02709438, JFM 40.0038.03 (in Italian).
* Tricomi, G. F. (1962), Giacinto Morera, "Matematici italiani del primo secolo dello stato unitario (Italian mathematicians of the first century of the unitary state)", Memorie dell'Accademia delle Scienze di Torino. Classe di Scienze fisiche matematiche e naturali, series IV I: pp. 120, Zbl 0132.24405, http://www.dm.unito.it/sism/m_italiani/biografie/tricomi/morera.html (in Italian). Available from the website of the Società Italiana di Storia delle Matematiche.


References

* Ericksen, J. L. (1960), "Tensor Fields (Appendix to "The Classical Field Theories")", in Flügge, Siegfried, Principles of Classical Mechanics and Field Theory/Prinzipien der Klassischen Mechanik und Feldtheorie, Handbuch der Physik (Encyclopedia of Physics), III/1, Berlin-Heidelberg-New York: Springer-Verlag, pp. 794–858, Zbl 0118.39702 .
* Morera, Giacinto (1886), "Un teorema fondamentale nella teorica delle funzioni di una variabile complessa", Rendiconti del Reale Instituto Lombardo di Scienze e Lettere 19 (2): 304–307, JFM 18.0338.02, archived from the original on unspecified date, http://www.archive.org/stream/rendiconti00unkngoog#page/n312/mode/2up , (in Italian). The paper containing the first proof of Morera's theorem.
* Morera, Giacinto (1902), "Sulla definizione di funzione di una variabile complessa", Atti della Reale Accademia delle Scienze di Torino. 37: 99–102, JFM 33.0396.01, archived from the original on 2009-03-05, http://www.archive.org/stream/attidellarealeac37real#page/98/mode/2up , (in Italian).
* Truesdell, C.; Toupin, R.A. (1960), "The Classical Field Theories", in Flügge, Siegfried, Principles of Classical Mechanics and Field Theory/Prinzipien der Klassischen Mechanik und Feldtheorie, Handbuch der Physik (Encyclopedia of Physics), III/1, Berlin-Heidelberg-New York: Springer-Verlag, pp. 226–793, Zbl 0118.39702 .

External links

* O'Connor, John J.; Robertson, Edmund F., "Giacinto Morera", MacTutor History of Mathematics archive, University of St Andrews, http://www-history.mcs.st-andrews.ac.uk/Biographies/Morera.html .
* Publications of Giacinto Morera at the MacTutor History of Mathematics archive.
* Gallery of the most influential figures in the history of complex analysis with a photo of Giacinto Morera.

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