Arthur Lee Dixon

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Arthur Lee Dixon
Born (1867-11-27)27 November 1867
Pickering, North Yorkshire
Died 20 February 1955(1955-02-20) (aged 87)
Sandgate, Kent
Nationality British
Fields Mathematics
Institutions University of Oxford
Alma mater Worcester College, Oxford
Known for work on analytic number theory and the application of algebra to geometry, elliptic functions and hyperelliptic functions
Notable awards Fellow of the Royal Society[1]

Arthur Lee Dixon FRS[1] (27 November 1867 — 20 February 1955) was a British mathematician and holder of the Waynflete Professorship of Pure Mathematics at the University of Oxford.[2][3]

Early life and education[edit]

The younger brother of Alfred Cardew Dixon, he was educated at Kingswood School and Worcester College, Oxford, becoming a Tutorial Fellow at Merton College in 1898 and the Waynflete Professor in 1922. Dixon was the last mathematical professor at Oxford to hold a life tenure, and although he was not particularly noted for his mathematical innovations he did publish many papers on analytic number theory and the application of algebra to geometry, elliptic functions and hyperelliptic functions. Elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1912 and serving as President of the London Mathematical Society from 1924 to 1926, Dixon died on 20 February 1955.

Dixon was born on 27 November 1867 in Pickering, North Yorkshire to G.T. Dixon, and was the younger brother of Alfred Cardew Dixon. From 1879 to 1885 he studied at Kingswood School, before matriculating at Worcester College, Oxford as a scholar to study mathematics.[4] In 1898 he became a Tutorial Fellow at Merton College,[5] and in 1899 he graduated.

Waynflete Professorship[edit]

His fellowship allowed him to continue to study and work at Oxford until 1922, when he was appointed Waynflete Professor of Pure Mathematics. Dixon was the last mathematician elected to an Oxford Chair with a life tenure.[6]

His research was focused on alegebra and its application to geometry, elliptic functions and hyperelliptic functions. From 1908 onwards he published a series of papers on algebraic eliminants. He also published a dozen joint papers with W.L. Ferrar on analytic number theory. Dixon was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1912, and became President of the London Mathematical Society in 1924, a position he held for two years.[4] Dixon died on 20 February 1955.[1]

Personal life[edit]

In 1902 Dixon married Catherine Rieder. Catherine found the atmosphere in Oxford difficult for her health, and spent a lot of time in Pau to recover. The couple had one child, a daughter, who later married F.J. Baden Fuller; when Catherine died in 1930, Dixon moved in with his daughter and her husband in Sandgate, Kent, where he spent the rest of his life.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Chaundy, T. W. (1955). "Arthur Lee Dixon 1867-1955". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society 1: 33–26. doi:10.1098/rsbm.1955.0004. JSTOR 769241. 
  2. ^ O'Connor, John J.; Robertson, Edmund F., "Arthur Lee Dixon", MacTutor History of Mathematics archive, University of St Andrews .
  3. ^ Fauvel, John (2000). Oxford figures: 800 years of the mathematical sciences. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-852309-2. 
  4. ^ a b "Dixon_Arthur biography". University of St Andrews. Retrieved 5 December 2009. 
  5. ^ "Prof A.L. Dixon". The Times. 21 February 1955. Retrieved 5 December 2009. 
  6. ^ Fauvel (2000) p.245