# Cauchy principal value

In mathematics, the **Cauchy principal value** of certain improper integrals is defined as either

- the finite number

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \lim_{\varepsilon\rightarrow 0+} \left[\int_a^{b-\varepsilon} f(x)\,dx+\int_{b+\varepsilon}^c f(x)\,dx\right]}**

- where
*b*is a point at which the behavior of the function*f*is such that

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \int_a^b f(x)\,dx=\pm\infty}**

- for any
*a*<*b*and

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \int_b^c f(x)\,dx=\mp\infty}**

- for any
*c*>*b*(one sign is "+" and the other is "−").

or

- the finite number

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \lim_{a\rightarrow\infty}\int_{-a}^a f(x)\,dx}**

- where

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \int_{-\infty}^0 f(x)\,dx=\pm\infty}**

- and

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \int_0^\infty f(x)\,dx=\mp\infty}**

- (again, one sign is "+" and the other is "−").

In some cases it is necessary to deal simultaneously with singularities both at a finite number *b* and at infinity. This is usually done by a limit of the form

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \lim_{\varepsilon \rightarrow 0+}\int_{b-\frac{1}{\varepsilon}}^{b-\varepsilon} f(x)\,dx+\int_{b+\varepsilon}^{b+\frac{1}{\varepsilon}}f(x)\,dx.}**

## Nomenclature

The Cauchy principal value of a function **Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle f}**
can take on several nomenclatures, varying for different authors. These include (but are not limited to): **Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle PV \int f(x)\,dx}**
, **Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle P}**
, P.V., **Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \mathcal{P}}**
, **Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle P_v}**
, **Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle (CPV)}**
and V.P..

## Examples

Consider the difference in values of two limits:

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \lim_{a\rightarrow 0+}\left(\int_{-1}^{-a}\frac{dx}{x}+\int_a^1\frac{dx}{x}\right)=0,}**

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \lim_{a\rightarrow 0+}\left(\int_{-1}^{-a}\frac{dx}{x}+\int_{2a}^1\frac{dx}{x}\right)=-\log_e 2.}**

The former is the **Cauchy principal value** of the otherwise ill-defined expression

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \int_{-1}^1\frac{dx}{x}{\ } \left(\mbox{which}\ \mbox{gives}\ -\infty+\infty\right).}**

Similarly, we have

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \lim_{a\rightarrow\infty}\int_{-a}^a\frac{2x\,dx}{x^2+1}=0,}**

but

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \lim_{a\rightarrow\infty}\int_{-2a}^a\frac{2x\,dx}{x^2+1}=-\log_e 4.}**

The former is the principal value of the otherwise ill-defined expression

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \int_{-\infty}^\infty\frac{2x\,dx}{x^2+1}{\ } \left(\mbox{which}\ \mbox{gives}\ -\infty+\infty\right).}**

These pathologies do not afflict Lebesgue-integrable functions, that is, functions the integrals of whose absolute values are finite.

## Distribution theory

Let **Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle C_0^\infty(\mathbb{R})}**
be the set of smooth functions with compact support on the real line **Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \mathbb{R}.}**
Then, the map

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \operatorname{p.\!v.}\left(\frac{1}{x}\right)\,: C_0^\infty(\mathbb{R}) \to \mathbb{C}}**

defined via the Cauchy principal value as

**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle \operatorname{p.\!v.}\left(\frac{1}{x}\right)(u)=\lim_{\varepsilon\to 0+} \int_{| x|>\varepsilon} \frac{u(x)}{x} \, dx}**for**Failed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "https://wikimedia.org/api/rest_v1/":): {\displaystyle u\in C_0^\infty(\mathbb{R})}**

is a distribution.