Hermite, Charles (shärl ĕrmētˈ) [key], 1822–1901, French mathematician. A professor at the École polytechnique, Paris (1869–76), and at the Faculty of Sciences (1869–97), he exerted a strong influence on the French school of mathematics. He made valuable contributions to the theory of numbers, the theory of elliptic functions, and the theory of equations (especially of the fifth degree). In 1873, Hermite proved the transcendence of the irrational number
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