A mathematical genious

The only portrait ever painted of Niels Henrik Abel was painted by Johan Gørbitz in 1826. 
Copyright: Universitetet i Oslo
The only portrait ever painted of Niels Henrik Abel was painted by Johan Gørbitz in 1826. 
Copyright: Universitetet i Oslo

Niels Henrik Abel (5 August 1802 – 6 April 1829) was a Norwegian mathematician who made pioneering contributions in a variety of fields.

His most famous single result is the first complete proof demonstrating the impossibility of solving the general quintic equation in radicals. This question was one of the outstanding open problems of his day, and had been unresolved for over 250 years.

Died only 26 years old
He was also an innovator in the field of elliptic functions, discoverer of Abelian functions.
He made his discoveries while living in poverty and died at the age of 26 from tuberculosis.

The French mathematician Charles Hermite said about Niels Henrik Abel:
"Abel has left mathematicians enough to keep them busy for five hundred years."


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