Mikhail Yakovlevich Suslin

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Mikhail Yakovlevich Suslin (Russian: Михаи́л Я́ковлевич Су́слин; Krasavka, Saratov Oblast, November 15, 1894 – 21 October 1919, Krasavka) (sometimes transliterated Souslin) was a Russian mathematician who made major contributions to the fields of general topology and descriptive set theory.

His name is especially associated to Suslin's problem, a question relating to totally ordered sets that was eventually found to be independent of the standard system of set-theoretic axioms, ZFC.

He contributed greatly to the theory of analytic sets, sometimes called after him, a kind of a set of reals which is definable via trees. In fact, while he was a research student of Nikolai Luzin (in 1917) he found an error in an argument of Lebesgue, who believed he had proved that for any Borel set in \R^2 (i. e. the analytic sets), the projection onto the real axis was also a Borel set.

Suslin died of typhus in the 1919 Moscow epidemic following the Russian Civil War.

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