[FOM] Simple historical question

Neil Tennant neilt at mercutio.cohums.ohio-state.edu
Thu Jul 19 21:02:32 EDT 2007

> To whom should we rightly give first credit for the result/observation 
> that Th(N,0,S,+,*,<) is undecidable?

Perhaps the answer is to be found in section II.5 (beginning on p.60) of 
A. Tarski, A. Mostowski and R.M. Robinson, Undecidable Theories,
North-Holland, Amsterdam, 1953.

The footnotes display the required degree of historical sensitivity.
Theorem 9 and Corollary 10 cover a wide range of systems. For the special
case of Th(N) [called sans-serif 'N' in the monograph], the result is
attributed to Tarski's famous paper on truth (the German version in
Studia Philosophica), 'in particular footnotes 88 and 95'.

Neil Tennant

More information about the FOM mailing list