The Stacks project

Example 9.3.6. Let $X$ be a Riemann surface. Let $\mathbf{C}(X)$ denote the set of meromorphic functions on $X$. Then $\mathbf{C}(X)$ is a ring under multiplication and addition of functions. It turns out that in fact $\mathbf{C}(X)$ is a field. Namely, if a nonzero function $f(z)$ is meromorphic, so is $1/f(z)$. For example, let $S^2$ be the Riemann sphere; then we know from complex analysis that the ring of meromorphic functions $\mathbf{C}(S^2)$ is the field of rational functions $\mathbf{C}(z)$.

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