Vanderbilt mathematics professor emeritus Jonsson dead at 96

Bjarni Jonsson in 2007. (Daniel Dubois/Vanderbilt)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Bjarni Jonsson, known as an authority on algebra and Vanderbilt University’s first distinguished professor of mathematics, has died. He was 96.

The university said Wednesday that Jonsson died Sept. 30.

Jonsson was an emeritus professor of mathematics at Vanderbilt, where he began in 1966 and retired in 1993. He was instrumental in establishing the department’s graduate program.

Vanderbilt said his contributions are recognized by a number of mathematical objects that are named for him, including Jonsson and Jonsson-Tarski algebras, Jonsson cardinals, Jonsson terms, the Jonsson lemma and the Jonsson-Tarski duality.

Jonsson studied at the University of California, Berkeley, with mathematician and logician Alfred Tarski.

He was elected an inaugural fellow of the American Mathematical Society in 2012 and was an invited speaker at the International Congress of Mathematicians in 1974.

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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