Geometry and the Imagination

Geometry and the Imagination is the English translation of the 1932 book Anschauliche Geometrie by David Hilbert and Stephan Cohn-Vossen.[1]

Geometry and the Imagination
Original titleAnschauliche Geometrie
TranslatorPaul Nemenyi
PublisherChelsea Publishing (American Mathematical Society)
Publication date

The book was based on a series of lectures Hilbert made in the winter of 1920–21. The book is an attempt to present some then-current mathematical thought to "contribute to a more just appreciation of mathematics by a wider range of people than just the specialists."[2]


The Mathematical Association of America said about the book, "this book is a masterpiece — a delightful classic that should never go out of print".[3] Physics Today called it "a readable exposition of modern geometry and its relation to other branches of mathematics".[4] The Scientific Monthly said about it "has been a classic for twenty years . . . Although it deals with elementary topics, it reaches the fringe of our knowledge in many directions".[5]


  1. Hilbert, David; Cohn-Vossen, Stephan (1999). Geometry and the imagination (2nd ed.). Providence, R.I.: AMS Chelsea Pub. ISBN 9780821819982. OCLC 41256151.
  2. Hilbert, page iv
  3. "Geometry and the Imagination | Mathematical Association of America". Retrieved 2017-10-01.
  4. Hilbert, D.; Cohn‐Vossen, S. (May 1953). "Geometry and the Imagination". Physics Today. doi:10.1063/1.3061234.
  5. Coxeter, H.S.M. (February 1953). "Review: Intuitive Geometry". The Scientific Monthly. 76 (2): 117–118. JSTOR 20643.

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