Is there an English translation of Kuratowski's proof about planar graphs?

  • $\begingroup$ You want a translation of his proof, or a proof? $\endgroup$ – Mariano Suárez-Álvarez Dec 24 '09 at 21:21
  • $\begingroup$ I am interested in the translation (mostly). $\endgroup$ – adamo Dec 25 '09 at 18:55

In case you are asking for the original paper "Sur le problème des courbes gauches en Topologie" by Kuratowski where he first proves his characterization of planar graphs, then a translation by J.Jaworowski can be found in "Graph Theory, Łagów", 1981, M. Borowiecki, J. W. Kennedy and M. M. Sysło. It is the proceedings of a conference held in Łagów, dedicated to the memory of K.Kuratowski.


Kuratowski's theorem is set as an exercise in Ch. 5 of Combinatorial Problems and Exercises by Lovasz. The problem is given as follows:

Let G be a minimal non-planar graph with all vertices of degree at least 3. Then:

  1. G is 3-connected. (This is straightforward; supposing otherwise and removing the cutset we can get a planar embedding of G.)
  2. G contains a cycle with a chord. (Provided hint: Consider a maximum path.)
  3. G is isomorphic to one of $K_5$, $K_{3, 3}$.
  4. Conclude Kuratowski's theorem from part 3.

The proof is on pp. 299-301, which fortunately are all viewable in the Google Books preview.


You might just want to read Jim Belk's excellent exposition at the Everything Seminar.

  • $\begingroup$ I believe his name is Jim Belk. $\endgroup$ – Peter Samuelson May 4 '10 at 14:06

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