Felix Hausdorff

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Felix Hausdorff (1868-1942) was a mathematician who is considered to be one of the founders of modern topology and who contributed significantly to set theory and functional analysis. He defined and studied partially ordered sets, Hausdorff spaces, and the Hausdorff dimension. He proved the Hausdorff maximality theorem. He published philosophical and literary works under the pseudonym "Paul Mongré".

Hausdorff was professor in Bonn when the Nazis came to power. Even though he was a jew, he felt that as a respected University professor, he was immune. His abstract mathematics was denounced as "jewish" and "un-German" and he lost his position in 1935. He sent his daughter to Great Britain but stayed with his wife in Germany. When in 1942 he could no longer avoid being sent to a concentration camp, he committed suicide together with his wife and sister in law.