 x Abelian variety Overview

In mathematics
Mathematics
Mathematics is the study of quantity, space, structure, and change. Mathematicians seek out patterns and formulate new conjectures. Mathematicians resolve the truth or falsity of conjectures by mathematical proofs, which are arguments sufficient to convince other mathematicians of their validity...

, particularly in algebraic geometry
Algebraic geometry
Algebraic geometry is a branch of mathematics which combines techniques of abstract algebra, especially commutative algebra, with the language and the problems of geometry. It occupies a central place in modern mathematics and has multiple conceptual connections with such diverse fields as complex...

, complex analysis
Complex analysis
Complex analysis, traditionally known as the theory of functions of a complex variable, is the branch of mathematical analysis that investigates functions of complex numbers. It is useful in many branches of mathematics, including number theory and applied mathematics; as well as in physics,...

and number theory
Number theory
Number theory is a branch of pure mathematics devoted primarily to the study of the integers. Number theorists study prime numbers as well...

, an abelian variety is a projective algebraic variety that is also an algebraic group
Algebraic group
In algebraic geometry, an algebraic group is a group that is an algebraic variety, such that the multiplication and inverse are given by regular functions on the variety...

, i.e., has a group law that can be defined by regular function
Regular function
In mathematics, a regular function is a function that is analytic and single-valued in a given region. In complex analysis, any complex regular function is known as a holomorphic function...

s. Abelian varieties are at the same time among the most studied objects in algebraic geometry and indispensable tools for much research on other topics in algebraic geometry and number theory.

An abelian variety can be defined by equations having coefficients in any field
Field (mathematics)
In abstract algebra, a field is a commutative ring whose nonzero elements form a group under multiplication. As such it is an algebraic structure with notions of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division, satisfying certain axioms...

; the variety is then said to be defined over that field.   