## 4-36. Giovanni Battista Guccia

Giovanni Battista Guccia (1855–1914) was born to a wealthy and titled family in Palermo. He obtained a degree in mechanics and construction from the Technical Institute of Palermo in 1873, and matriculated the following year at the University of Palermo, in the faculty of mathematics, physics, and natural sciences. He transferred in 1875 to the University of Rome, where he took classes from Pietro Blaserna, Giuseppe Battaglini and Luigi Cremona. On 20 December, 1880, Guccia defended his thesis on algebraic surfaces in $E^{3}$ at the University of Rome under Cremona’s direction, entitled “Sopra una classe di superficie rappresentabili punto per punto in un piano”.

Guccia led the foundation in 1884 of the Circolo matematico di
Palermo, for which he served as treasurer, and to which he let rooms
(rent-free) in his spacious private residence in Palermo, known as
the Palazzo Guccia. Mathematicians and scientists from the university
joined the Circolo, smoothing the way for Guccia to be assigned to teach a course
in geometry in 1887. He was named extraordinary professor of geometry in
1889, and became a full professor in Palermo in 1894. After 1895,
his research publications became infrequent.^{1}^{1}endnote:
^{1}
On Guccia’s
life and career in mathematics, see Bongiorno and Curbera (2018).

Guccia’s real talent was in developing the Circolo into one of the
leading mathematical societies. Establishment of a journal, the
*Rendiconti del Circolo matematico di Palermo*, was instrumental
to this development. Guccia served as chief editor of the
*Rendiconti* from 1888, and it is in this role that he
entertained an extensive correspondence with Poincaré, extending from
1888 to 1912. Poincaré was first elected to the board of the *Circolo* on 18
January, 1891.^{2}^{2}endnote:
^{2}
Lebon (1912, 18). On the history of the Circolo, and Poincaré’s
role in its development, see Brigaglia and Masotto (1982); Bongiorno and Curbera (2018). The
development of mathematics in Sicily during this period is
discussed by Tazzioli (2018).

Time-stamp: "16.10.2023 18:44"

### Notes

- 1 On Guccia’s life and career in mathematics, see Bongiorno and Curbera (2018).
- 2 Lebon (1912, 18). On the history of the Circolo, and Poincaré’s role in its development, see Brigaglia and Masotto (1982); Bongiorno and Curbera (2018). The development of mathematics in Sicily during this period is discussed by Tazzioli (2018).

## References

- Giovanni Battista Guccia. Springer, Cham. Cited by: endnote 1, endnote 2.
- Il Circolo Matematico di Palermo. Dedalo, Bari. Cited by: endnote 2.
- Henri Poincaré : Biographie, bibliographie analytique des écrits. Gauthier-Villars, Paris. link1 Cited by: endnote 2.
- Interplay between local and international journals: The case of Sicily, 1880–1920. Historia Mathematica 45 (4), pp. 334–353. link1, link2 Cited by: endnote 2.