Information on the exhibition


In the beginning there was only the idea to present some information on a monument of Pythagoras, which has been discovered accidentally during holidays in Pythagoreio (Samos). After stumbling on some paintings on Euklid, Archimedes and Pythagoras in Berlin's painting gallery as well as providing a photograph of a monument of Pierre de Fermat by my sister there was no chance to prevent from presenting the material in form of an exhibition.

First of all the aims of the exhibition should be defined: Usually looking for monuments - or memorial places in general - often need to make long travels. Moreover in much cases their existence is only known locally. Hence presenting a collection of photographs of such monuments occasionally with some detailed information in the internet seems to be the right mean for making them public and to give an impression on their diversity.

But there is also a need to define restrictions for the contents of the exhibition. Only monuments concerning mathematicians will be considered in this exhibition. Moreover the achievements of these mathematicians will not be mentioned. For this information other sources are availbale (e. g. the MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive).

The designation "mathematician" is not only meant in its strong today's sense. It should also be interpreted to include those persons, who made remarkable contributions to or deserve well of mathematics. No wonder if the physician Isaac Newton is considered due to his development of calculus, but also the painter Albrecht Dürer due to his contributions to the theory of proportions. Also August Leopold Crelle will be considered due to his engagement and foundation of the "Journal of pure and applied Mathematics". The monuments of Nicolaus Copernicus may be regarded as an exception, because he became renowned as astronomer. But it should be mentioned that he studied also geometry and arithmetics (cf. Bührke, Thomas: Sternstunden der Astronomie, Verlag C. H. Beck, Munich, 2001, p. 20). It should be mentioned that scientists of former times achieved great results in different areas. This is especially true for Carl Friedrich Gauß, who also was an outstanding researcher in the fields astronomy and geodesy.

For guidance

The overview of the exhibition gives only a rough view to the structure of the exhibition. The sections itself are built by an introducing text and an alphabetically ordered list of the exhibits. The exhibits are usually realized as separate pages / documents (HTML format). The latter is appropriate because they usually contain several pictures, which will yield a long loading time amount if more or all are combined within one document. This means that the exhibition is organized in a tree structure. This is optimal when looking for a specified exhibit. But for a visit of the exhibition in its classical sense this is not the case. To overcome this failure the opportunity to follow round walks through the sections is provided. Starting such round walks is possible from the overview of the exhibition as well as from the sections. For following these round walks it is necessary that the browser supports frames as well as JavaScript.

But in contrast to real exhibitions this is not the only possibility to provide round walks. This exhibition provides also round walks for all exhibits related to a specified mathematician. These round walks start from the person index, which contains all the mathematicians with exhibits. Moreover there also a location index, which contains memorial places, which are referred in this exhibition.

The arrows used in the overview of the exhibition possess the following meaning: A downward arrow see below marks a link referring to a target, which is located on the same page. While an arrow pointing to the right follow this link marks a link, which refers to an other document. All pages of this exhibition except those with stamps will be displayed in the same browsers window. (This will certainly not be the case when an other window is explicitely opened.) The pages - especially those with the exhibits - are provided with German and English texts. The paragraphs are marked with the relevant flags deutsch and english. Only in cases where this approach looks not suitable, two separated pages are established.

The copyright on the images persist to the individuals mentioned in the related context or, in case that nobody is mentioned, to the author of this site. Please contact them directly.


Column of the Belvedere on 
the Pfingstberg in Potsdam The first steps toward this exhibition in 2001 are already mentioned in the section General. In the beginning there was only a small number of exhibits. Hence a single document was provided containing links to all the exhibits (2002). Additional sections "Links to external sites" containing only links and "Monuments on Mathematics" have been established in 2002. The German 10 DM banknote with the portrait of C. F. Gauß disappeared with the introduction of the currency Euro. Consequently a section showing banknotes was introduced (2002), which was supplemented by the section "Stamps" (2003). In 2003 the exhibition was extended by 16 and in 2004 by 11 exhibits (without stamps). Hence there was a need to divide the exhibition in more sections and to provide them in separated pages (2005). This opportunity was used to provide an attractive design of the pages. The column shown on the right was the model for the figure, which is used as background image on several pages. This column is of korinthic type and is part of the Belvedere on the Pfingstberg in Potsdam.

For the city of Crotone in southern Italy a special page was designed for presenting some exhibits which do not exactly fit to the guidelines of the exhibition (special exhibition, 2005). Moreover a section for posters was added which contained only one exhibit at the beginning (2006). In the same year the section Coins was introduced. Some effort was made to add georeferences for location based exhibits. This means that maps or aerial views may be displayed showing a mark at the exact position of the object under consideration. Further extensions of the virtual exhibition were made thereafter concerning books (2006) and the sections Marginalia, Medals, and Origins (all 2008).

The first months of 2009 the structure of the virtual exhibition was refined, because some sections contain already more than 80 exhibits. Simultaneously all pages have been equipped with (optional) navigation bars. They simply allow to move to other levels of the tree structure (cf. above). Details may be found in the information on the intentions with respect to the navigation bar.

Back to the main page Created by Wolfgang Volk in February 2005
Last correction on February 9th, 2012