Charles Wells (mathematician)

Charles Wells (4 May 1937 in Atlanta, Georgia – 17 June 2017)[1][2] was an American mathematician known for his fundamental contributions to category theory. He was Professor Emeritus of Mathematics at Case Western Reserve University.[3]

Wells taught there for about 35 years, with sabbatical interruptions at ETH Zürich (in mathematics) and Oxford University (in computing science). He had a research career in mathematics in finite fields, group theory and category theory. In the last twenty years of this life he had also been interested in the language of mathematics and related issues concerning teaching and communicating abstract ideas.

He lived in Minnesota.



  • Barr, Michael; Wells, Charles (1985), "Toposes, Triples and Theories" (PDF), Grundlehren der mathematischen Wissenschaften, Springer-Verlag, 278, ISBN 0-387-96115-1.[4][5]
  • Michael Barr and Charles Wells: Category Theory for Computing Science (1999).
  • Wells, Charles (2003), A Handbook of Mathematical Discourse, Infinity Publishing, ISBN 0-7414-1685-9.

Selected research articles



  1. Birth and Career Data from American Men and Women of Science, Thomson Gale 2004
  2. Home page at CWRU
  3. Pitts, A. (1991). Review of Toposes, Triples and Theories by Barr, M., & Wells, C., Journal of Symbolic Logic 56(1), 340–341.
  4. Rota, G. (1986). Toposes, Triples and Theories, Springer, 1985, 345 pp., Advances in Mathematics 61(2).
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