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Famous Mathematicians from France

Updated June 14, 2019 32.9k views302 items

List of notable or famous mathematicians from France, with bios and photos, including the top mathematicians born in France and even some popular mathematicians who immigrated to France. If you're trying to find out the names of famous French mathematicians then this list is the perfect resource for you. These mathematicians are among the most prominent in their field, and information about each well-known mathematician from France is included when available.

List people include Benoit Mandelbrot, Nicolas de Caritat, marquis de Condorcet and many more.

This historic mathematicians from France list can help answer the questions "Who are some French mathematicians of note?" and "Who are the most famous mathematicians from France?" These prominent mathematicians of France may or may not be currently alive, but what they all have in common is that they're all respected French mathematicians.

Use this list of renowned French mathematicians to discover some new mathematicians that you aren't familiar with. Don't forget to share this list by clicking one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. {#nodes}
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  • 1

    René Descartes

    Dec. at 54 (1596-1650)

    BirthplaceDescartes, Indre-et-Loire, France

    René Descartes ( day-KART, also UK: DAY-kart, French: [ʁəne dekaʁt] (listen); Latinized: Renatus Cartesius; adjectival form: Cartesian ; 31 March 1596 – 11 February 1650) was a French philosopher,...  more

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  • 2

    Blaise Pascal

    Dec. at 39 (1623-1662)

    BirthplaceClermont-Ferrand, France

    Blaise Pascal ( pa-SKAL, also UK: -⁠SKAHL, PASK-əl, -⁠al, US: pah-SKAHL, French: [blɛz paskal]; 19 June 1623 – 19 August 1662) was a French mathematician, physicist, inventor, writer and Catholic...  more

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  • 3

    Benoit Mandelbrot

    Dec. at 86 (1924-2010)

    BirthplaceWarsaw, Second Polish Republic

    Benoit B.  Mandelbrot  (20 November 1924 – 14 October 2010) was a Polish-born, French and American mathematician and polymath with broad interests in the practical sciences, especially regarding what...  more
  • 4

    Évariste Galois

    Dec. at 21 (1811-1832)

    BirthplaceBourg-la-Reine, France

    Évariste Galois (; French: [evaʁist ɡalwa]; 25 October 1811 – 31 May 1832) was a French mathematician and political activist. While still in his teens, he was able to determine a necessary and...  more
  • 5

    BirthplaceRibemont, France

    Marie Jean Antoine Nicolas de Caritat, Marquis of Condorcet (French: [maʁi ʒɑ̃n‿ɑ̃twan nikola də kaʁita kɔ̃dɔʁsɛ]; 17 September 1743 – 29 March 1794), known as Nicolas de Condorcet, was a French...  more
  • 6

    Pierre de Fermat

    Dec. at 64 (1601-1665)

    BirthplaceBeaumont-de-Lomagne, France

    Pierre de Fermat (French: [pjɛːʁ də fɛʁma]) (between 31 October and 6 December 1607 – 12 January 1665) was a French lawyer at the Parlement of Toulouse, France, and a mathematician who is given...  more
  • 7

    Joseph Fourier

    Dec. at 62 (1768-1830)

    BirthplaceAuxerre, France

    Jean-Baptiste Joseph Fourier (; French: [fuʁje]; 21 March 1768 – 16 May 1830) was a French mathematician and physicist born in Auxerre and best known for initiating the investigation of Fourier...  more
  • 8

    François Arago

    Dec. at 67 (1786-1853)

    BirthplaceEstagel, France

    Dominique François Jean Arago (Catalan: Domènec Francesc Joan Aragó), known simply as François Arago (French: [fʁɑ̃swa aʁaɡo]; Catalan: Francesc Aragó, IPA: [fɾənˈsɛsk əɾəˈɣo]; 26 February 1786 – 2...  more
  • 9

    Émilie du Châtelet

    Dec. at 43 (1706-1749)

    BirthplaceParis, France

    Gabrielle Émilie Le Tonnelier de Breteuil, Marquise du Châtelet (French pronunciation: [emili dy ʃɑtlɛ] (listen); 17 December 1706 – 10 September 1749) was a French natural philosopher,...  more
  • 10

    Jacques Dixmier

    Age: 96

    BirthplaceSaint-Étienne, France

    Jacques Dixmier is a French mathematician. He worked on operator algebras, and wrote several of the standard reference books on them, and introduced the Dixmier trace and the Dixmier mapping. He...  more
  • 11

    David Ruelle

    Age: 85

    BirthplaceGhent, Belgium

    David Pierre Ruelle is a Belgian-French mathematical physicist. He has worked on statistical physics and dynamical systems. With Floris Takens he coined the term strange attractor, and founded a new...  more
  • 12

    Jean le Rond d'Alembert

    Dec. at 66 (1717-1783)

    BirthplaceParis, France

    Jean-Baptiste le Rond d'Alembert (; French: [ʒɑ̃ batist lə ʁɔ̃ dalɑ̃bɛːʁ]; 16 November 1717 – 29 October 1783) was a French mathematician, mechanician, physicist, philosopher, and music theorist....  more
  • 13

    Jean Baptiste Joseph Delambre

    Dec. at 73 (1749-1822)

    BirthplaceAmiens, France

    Jean Baptiste Joseph, chevalier Delambre (19 September 1749 – 19 August 1822) was a French mathematician and astronomer. He was also director of the Paris Observatory, and author of well-known books...  more
  • 14

    Paul Painlevé

    Dec. at 70 (1863-1933)

    BirthplaceParis, France

    Paul Painlevé (French: [pɔl pɛ̃ləve]; 5 December 1863 – 29 October 1933) was a French mathematician and statesman. He served twice as Prime Minister of the Third Republic: 12 September – 13 November...  more
  • 15

    Marin Mersenne

    Dec. at 60 (1588-1648)

    BirthplaceOizé, France

    Marin Mersenne, Marin Mersennus or le Père Mersenne (French: [mɛʀsɛn]; 8 September 1588 – 1 September 1648) was a French polymath, whose works touched a wide variety of fields. He is perhaps best...  more
  • 16

    Augustin-Louis Cauchy

    Dec. at 68 (1789-1857)

    BirthplaceParis, France

    Baron Augustin-Louis Cauchy (; French: [oɡystɛ̃ lwi koʃi]; 21 August 1789 – 23 May 1857) was a French mathematician, engineer, and physicist who made pioneering contributions to several branches of...  more
  • 17

    Gaston Julia

    Dec. at 85 (1893-1978)

    BirthplaceSidi Bel Abbès, Algeria

    Gaston Maurice Julia (3 February 1893 – 19 March 1978) was a French mathematician who devised the formula for the Julia set. His works were popularized by French mathematician Benoit Mandelbrot; the...  more
  • 18

    Sophie Germain

    Dec. at 55 (1776-1831)

    BirthplaceParis, France

    Marie-Sophie Germain (French: [maʁi sɔfi ʒɛʁmɛ̃]; 1 April 1776 – 27 June 1831) was a French mathematician, physicist, and philosopher. Despite initial opposition from her parents and difficulties...  more
  • 19

    Gaspard Monge

    Dec. at 72 (1746-1818)

    BirthplaceBeaune, France

    Gaspard Monge, Comte de Péluse (9 May 1746 – 28 July 1818) was a French mathematician, the inventor of descriptive geometry (the mathematical basis of technical drawing), and the father of...  more
  • 20

    Michel Philippot

    Dec. at 71 (1925-1996)

    BirthplaceVerzy, France

    Michel Paul Philippot (2 February 1925 – 28 July 1996) was a French composer, mathematician, acoustician, musicologist, aesthetician, broadcaster, and educator....  more
  • 21

    Théodore Reinach

    Dec. at 68 (1860-1928)

    BirthplaceSaint-Germain-en-Laye, France

    Théodore Reinach (July 3, 1860 – October 28, 1928) was a French archaeologist, mathematician, lawyer, papyrologist, philologist, epigrapher, historian, numismatist, musicologist, professor, and...  more
  • 22

    Pierre-Simon Laplace

    Dec. at 78 (1749-1827)

    BirthplaceBeaumont-en-Auge, France

    Pierre-Simon, marquis de Laplace (; French: [pjɛʁ simɔ̃ laplas]; 23 March 1749 – 5 March 1827) was a French scholar whose work was important to the development of engineering, mathematics,...  more
  • 23

    Gersonides

    Dec. at 56 (1288-1344)

    BirthplaceBagnols-sur-Cèze, France

    Levi ben Gershon (1288–1344), better known by his Graecized name as Gersonides, or by his Latinized name Magister Leo Hebraeus, or in Hebrew by the abbreviation of first letters as RaLBaG, was a...  more
  • 24

    BirthplaceMontbard, France

    Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon (French pronunciation: ​[ʒɔʁʒ lwi ləklɛʁ kɔ̃t də byfɔ̃]; 7 September 1707 – 16 April 1788) was a French naturalist, mathematician, cosmologist, and...  more
  • 25

    Urbain Le Verrier

    Dec. at 66 (1811-1877)

    BirthplaceSaint-Lô, France

    Urbain Jean Joseph Le Verrier FRS (FOR) HFRSE (French: [yʁbɛ̃ ʒɑ̃ ʒɔzɛf lə vɛʁje]; 11 March 1811 – 23 September 1877) was a French astronomer and mathematician who specialized in celestial mechanics...  more