Garside element

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In mathematics, a Garside element is an element of an algebraic structure such as a monoid that has several desirable properties.

Formally, if M is a monoid, then an element Δ of M is said to be a Garside element if the set of all right divisors of Δ,

is the same set as the set of all left divisors of Δ,

and this set generates M.

A Garside element is in general not unique: any power of a Garside element is again a Garside element.

Garside monoid and Garside group[edit]

A Garside monoid is a monoid with the following properties:

A Garside monoid satisfies the Ore condition for multiplicative sets and hence embeds in its group of fractions: such a group is a Garside group. A Garside group is biautomatic and hence has soluble word problem and conjugacy problem. Examples of such groups include braid groups and, more generally, Artin groups of finite Coxeter type.[1]

The name was coined by Patrick Dehornoy and Luis Paris[1] to mark the work on the conjugacy problem for braid groups of Frank Arnold Garside (1915–1988), a teacher at Magdalen College School, Oxford who served as Lord Mayor of Oxford in 1984–1985.[2]


  1. ^ a b Dehornoy, Patrick; Paris, Luis (1999), "Gaussian groups and Garside groups, two generalisations of Artin groups", Proceedings of the London Mathematical Society, 79 (3): 569–604, CiteSeerX, doi:10.1112/s0024611599012071
  2. ^ Garside, Frank A. (1969), "The braid group and other groups", Quarterly Journal of Mathematics, Second Series, 20: 235–254, Bibcode:1969QJMat..20..235G, doi:10.1093/qmath/20.1.235