Hellenic Mathematical Society

The Hellenic Mathematical Society

The Hellenic Mathematical Society was founded in 1918 [1]:-

Its main goal was to encourage the study of, and research in, the science of mathematics and its many applications, as well as the evolution of mathematical education.

The first President of the Society was Nikolaos Hatzidakis who served in this role from 1918 to 1925. He had studied under Darboux, Emile Picard, and Poincaré in Paris; under Hilbert, Klein and Schönflies in Göttingen; and under Fuchs, Knoblauch and Schwarz in Berlin. He undertook research into differential geometry and when he became a founder member of the Hellenic Mathematical Society he had been a professor at the University of Athens since 1901. The second President of the Society was Georgios Remoundos, who was also a founder member of the Society. He undertook research in function theory and had been appointed as professor of Higher Mathematical Analysis at the University of Athens in 1912 and he had also been appointed to the Technical University of Athens in 1916.

The Society began publication of the Bulletin of the Greek Mathematical Society in 1919 and Remoundos was a member of the editorial board. The Bulletin not only aimed at promoting mathematics and mathematical education but it also aimed at providing a means of communication between members of the Society.

Remoundos was President from 1925 to 1927 and then Konstantinos Maltezos was President in 1927. Maltezos, who worked on mechanics and theoretical physics, had been dismissed by the University of Athens in 1920 by the royalist Minister of Education after the exiled King Constantine I had been restored to his throne. However Maltezos had been reinstated to his professorship in October 1922 after King Constantine had abdicated and a military junta seized power in Greece, so he held his professorship at the time that he was President of the Society. Nilos Sakellariou, professor of analytical geometry at the University of Athens, then served as President of the Society from 1929. In 1931, under Sakellariou's Presidency, the Society organised the first Panhellenic Mathematical Competition. However, there followed an extremely difficult period for the Society.

General Ioannis Metaxas, on the political far right, encouraged unrest by workers and when a general strike was threatened he persuaded King George II, on 4 August 1936, to suspend parliament which did not reconvene over the following ten years. Metaxas, now a dictator, tried to bring back the values of ancient Greece and imposed his wishes on all aspects of Greek life. In particular he interfered in the running of the Society and N Kritikos resigned from the executive committee of the Hellenic Mathematical Society in 1936 due to political interference in the affairs of the Society.

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