Bernhard Neumann

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Bernhard Neumann
Bernhard Neumann.jpg
Born (1909-10-15)15 October 1909
Berlin, Germany
Died 20 October 2002(2002-10-20) (aged 93)
Canberra, Australia
Nationality British and Australian
Fields Mathematics
Institutions Australian National University
University of Manchester
Alma mater University of Berlin
University of Cambridge
Doctoral advisor Issai Schur
Philip Hall
Doctoral students Gilbert Baumslag
John Britton
László Kovács
Michael Newman
James Wiegold
Known for Petr–Douglas–Neumann theorem
Notable awards Adams Prize (1952)

Bernhard Hermann Neumann AC FRS[1] (15 October 1909 – 21 October 2002) was a German-born British-Australian mathematician who was one of the leading figures in group theory, greatly influencing the direction of the subject.[2][3]

Early life and education[edit]

He earned a PhD at the University of Cambridge in 1935 and a Doctor of Science at the University of Manchester in 1954. His students included Gilbert Baumslag, László Kovács, Michael Newman, and James Wiegold. His wife, Hanna Neumann, and son, Peter M. Neumann, are also notable for their contributions to group theory.

He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1959.[1]

In 1994, Bernhard Neumann was appointed a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC).[4] The Australian Mathematical Society awards a student prize named in his honour.[5]

The group-theoretic notion of HNN extension (where HNN stands for Higman–Neumann–Neumann) is named in (second) part after him.


  • Assistant Lecturer, University College, Cardiff, 1937–40.
  • Army Service, 1940–45.
  • Lecturer, University College, Hull, (now University of Hull), 1946–48
  • Lecturer, Senior Lecturer, Reader, Manchester, 1948–61
  • Professor and Head of Department of Mathematics, Institute of Advanced Studies, ANU, Canberra, 1962–74; Emeritus Professor, 1975–2002.
  • Senior Research Fellow, CSIRO Division of Mathematics and Statistics, 1975–77; Honorary Research Fellow, 1978–99.


External links[edit]