Mathematics
Ireland

Mathematical Professorships at Trinity College Dublin (Nov 2019)

Trinity College Dublin has had four historical named chairs of mathematics and related areas, three of them with names suggesting a focus in natural philosophy (aka physics) or astronomy. They are

The Erasmus Smith's Professor of Mathematics (ESPM) from 1724 to 2008. The position was vacant 1921-1926, 1989-2000, and 2001-2004.

The Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (ESPNEP) from 1724 to 2012. The position was vacant 1743-1745.

The University Professor of Natural Philosophy (UPNP) from 1847 to today.

The Andrews Professor of Astronomy (APA) from 1724 to 1921, and sporadically from 1984 to today.

Note: the official terms of office holders are sometimes longer than people served, and are not always tied to academic years. Some people listed as serving until a particular year may have died very early in that year, or have resigned the previous year. Replacements were not always appointed immediately. Also, months of appointment are known to vary from January to November, and those appointed later in a year may not have taken up their post until the following calendar year.

These 4 chairs and many of those who held them are well documented in David Spearman's pioneering "Mathematics at TCD 1592-1992: 400 years of Mathematics". As is pointed out there, when discussing these professorships, most of the people who held these positions were mathematically minded.

Indeed, Ireland's most distinguished mathematical scientist, William Hamilton, was professor of astronomy. Here is the TCD record of his enrolling there on 7 July 1823 , just four weeks before his 18th birthday. His line is the eighth one, listed as "Gulielmus Hamilton", the first line being Bartholomew Lloyd (whose middle name was Clifford), son of mathematician Bartholomew Lloyd and brother of Humphrey who are both highlighted in this blog. The images here are at TCD online here and here.

 

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Closer inspection of Hamilton's line reveals later annotations in red: factus est Soc: Com: Jussii Propositi & Soc: Sen: Junii die 16 A:D: 1827 et codem die ab iis electus est Astronomiae Professor, referring to his being formally appointed professor on Saturday, 16 June 1827.

 

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The second edition of Dublin Evening Post that very day heralded his appointment:

 

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He still had final exams to sit on 19 & 20 June. Graduation was on Tuesday, 10 July, when 69 BAs were conferred. Back in June, while still technically an undergraduate, Hamilton had already had to exercise one professorial duty: "examining graduates in the higher branches of mathematics for Bishop Law's mathematical premium."

There are two errors in the TCD entrance record above which would perpetuate in future documents: the listing of Meath (East) as Hamilton's birthplace and the implication that his solicitor father Archibald (1778-1819) was still alive (it was customary to use defunctus when it was known that a father was deceased).

Those errors are for instance listed in the standard work of reference for TCD graduates up to 1860: Alumni Dublinensis: A Register of the Students, Graduates, Professors and Provosts of Trinity College in the University of Dublin, 1593–1860 edited by G.D. Burtchaell & T.U. Sadleir (Dublin, 1935), where on page 366 we see:

 

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No adjustments are suggested in the Addenda and Corrigenda section at the end of that volume. Note that there are later versions of Alumni Dublinensis (e.g., 1881) which account for post-1860 graduates. More TCD entrance and matriculation records may be explored here.

In one sense, what follows below is an expansion of a chronological accounting of all the scientists in Spearman's 4 lists, updated past 1992 as appropriate.

Some of the resulting 62 men (there were no women) also had a term as Donegall Lecturer, a title that was in use regularly from 1675 to 1944 (and on and off again since 1967). Usually that appointment preceded appointment to a professorship, occasionally it came later, and in one case it ran more or less concurrently. A future blog will survey all of the very numerous Donegall Lecturers.

Selection of winning candidates for professorships was not always without controversy, as this January 1870 report shows:

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Comments and corrections are, as always, welcome. As are more images of people featured here.

Thanks to Olivia Bree (St Pat's, Drumcondra) once more for considerable genealogical assistance, and sourcing of newspaper articles. David Spearman (TCD) and Luke Drury (DIAS) provided crucial clarification on numerous matters. Anne van Weerden (Utrecht) also made valuable contributions and suggestions, including drawing our attention to Hamilton's TCD records discussed and depicted above.

 

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 1. ESPNEP01 Richard Helsham (1683-1738) was born in Leggetsrath, Kilkenny, and was educated at TCD (Scholar 1700, BA 1702, Fellow 1704, MA 1705, MD 1713, Senior Fellow 1714). He was Donegall Lecturer of Maths (1723-1730) and served as the inaugural Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1724-1738). He was also a renowned practicing physician. His influential Lectures on Natural Philosophy book was published posthumously (1739).

Wikipedia / DIB

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 2. ESPNEP02 Caleb Cartwright (1796?-1763) was born in Cork, and was educated at TCD (BA 1720, MA 1723, Fellow 1724, DD 1735). He was Donegall Lecturer of Maths (1735-1738), and was then appointed the second Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1738-1743). Following that he resigned from TCD and spent the rest of his life as a clergyman.

Wikipedia

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 3. ESPNEP03 William Clement (1707-1782) was born in Carrickmacross, Monaghan, and educated at TCD (Scholar 1724, BA 1726, MA 1731, Fellow 1731, MB 1747, MD 1748). He first taught botony, then was appointed the third Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1745-1759), and Donegall Lecturer in Maths (1750-1759). He later taught medicine for 20 years, and served as Vice-Provost.

Wikipedia / TCD / Bio

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 4. ESPM01 John Stokes (1720–1781) was born in Dublin, and educated at TCD (BA 1740, MA 1743, Fellow 1746, BD 1752, DD 1755).  He was Donegall Lecturer of Maths (1760-1762) and the inaugural Erasmus Smith's Professor of Maths (1762–1764). After another year as Professor of Greek, he retired and lived out his days as a clergyman.

Wikipedia

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 5. ESPM02 Richard Murray (1725?-1799) was born in Down and was educated at TCD (Scholar 1745, BA 1747, MA & Fellow 1750, BD 1759, DD 1762). He spent his entire career there, including terms as Donegall Lecturer (1762-1764) and the second Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1764-1795). He also served as Librarian and Provost. He authored the book Artis logicæ compendium (1773), which was translated in 1852 as Murray's Compendium of Logic.

Wikipedia / TCD

 

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 6. ESPNEP05 Thomas Wilson (1726-1799) was born in Donegal, and was educated at TCD (Scholar 1746, BA 1748, MA & Fellowship 1753, DD 1758).  He was Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1769-1786), following which he retired to serve as a clergyman.

Wikipedia

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 7. ESPNEP04 Hugh Hamilton (1729-1805) was born 26 March in Balrothery, Dublin. He was educated at TCD (BA 1747, MA 1750, Fellow 1751, BD 1759, DD 1762), where he started his career, serving as the fourth Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1759-1769). His 1858 book Sectionibus Conicis: Tractatus Geometricus was praised by Euler and was adopted for use in many British universities. From 1864 on he became increasingly active in church matters, first in Armagh, and he was later made a bishop. He was also a charter member of the Royal Irish Academy. He was third great-grand-father of John L. Synge below.

Wikipedia / DNB

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 8. APA01 Henry Ussher (1741-1790) was born in Dunganstown, near Arklow, Wicklow. He was educated at TCD (Scholar 1759, BA 1761, MA & Fellow 1764, BD & DD 1779, Senior Fellow 1781), where he was Donegall Lecturer of Mathematics (1769-1770).  He was appointed the inaugural Andrews Professor of Astronomy (1783-1790), and personally planned and coordinated the construction and instrumentation of Dunsink Observatory on the outskirts of Dublin.

Wikipedia / History of Dunsink

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 9. ESPNEP06 Matthew Young (1750-1800) was born 3 October in Castlerea, Roscommon, and was educated at TCD (Scholar 1769, BA 1772, MA 1774, Fellow 1775, BD 1782, DD 1786). His career was mostly spent at TCD, where he was Donegall Lecturer in Mathematics (1782-1876), and then Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1786-1799), then Regius Professor of Greek (1799). He published the books An Enquiry into the Principal Phenomena of Sounds and Musical Strings (1784), and An Analysis of the Principles of Natural Philosophy (1800). In 1798 he was made a bishop.

Wikipedia

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10. ESPM04 George Hall (1753–1811) was born in Northumberland, England, but grew up in Dublin. He was educated at TCD (Scholar 1773, BA 1775, Fellow 1777, MA 1778, BD 1786, DD & Senior Fellow 1790), and spent the greater part of his career there. For over two decades he was professor of Divinity, Greek, and History, and Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1799-1800). He then retired to work as a clergyman but returned to serve as Provost (1806-1811). He was appointed a bishop a few days before his death.

Wikipedia / TCD

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11. ESPM03 & ESPNEP07 Thomas Elrington (1760–1835) was born 18 December in Dublin, and was educated at TCD (BA 1780, MA 1785, DD 1795). He was Donegall Lecturer in Maths (1790-1795), the third Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1795–1799), and then the seventh Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1799-1807). He was Provost (1811-1820), and then retired from TCD, ending his career as a bishop.

Wikipedia / TCD

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12. APA02 John Brinkley (1766-1835) was born in Woodbridge, Suffolk, England. He was educated at Cambridge (BA 1788, MA 1791).  He was appointed the second Andrews Professor of Astronomy (1790-1827), following which he served as a bishop.

Wikipedia / Bio

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13. ESPM05 William Magee (1766–1831) was born 18 March in Enniskillen, Fermanagh. He was educated at TCD (Scholar 1884, BA 1786, MA 1789, BD 1797, DD 1801). He was the fifth Erasmus Smith's Professor of Maths (1800–1812), and also taught divinity and Greek. From 1812 onwards he was a clergyman, eventually serving as a bishop. and finally as Archbishop of Dublin.

Wikipedia / Snipview / Grave

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14. ESPM06 & ESPNEP09 Bartholomew Lloyd (1772-1837) was born 5 February in New Ross. He was educated at TCD (Scholar 1790, BA 1792, MA & Fellowship 1796, BD 1805, DD 1808), and spent his entire career there. Starting in 1813, when he was appointed Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths, he implemented radical changes in the methods of teaching mathematics, including the introduction of the calculus to the curriculum. In 1822, he became Erasmus Smith's Prof of Natural & Experimental Philosophy, a position he held until becoming Provost (1831-1837). At various points he also was Donnellan Lecturer, Regius Prof of Greek and Archbishop King's Lecturer of Divinity. He wrote several books.

Wikipedia / MacTutor / TCD 1 / TCD 2

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15. ESPNP08 William Davenport (1772–1824) was born in Dublin, and was educated at TCD (Scholar 1791, BA 1792, Fellow 1795, MA 1796, DD 1808). He was Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1807-1822), and also lectured in divinity. He was a keen astronomer, and served as a clergyman at the end of his life.

Wikipedia

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16. ESPM07 James Wilson (1774?–1829) was born in Dublin and was educated at TCD (BA 1794, MA & Fellow 1800, BD & DD 1811). He served as Donegall Lecturer of Maths (1807-1822) and Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1822-1825). He spent his final years as a clergyman.

Wikipedia

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17. ESPM08 Franc Sadleir (1775–1851) was born in Tipperary and was educated at TCD (Scholar 1794, BA 1795, MA & Fellow 1805, BD & DD 1813). He spent his entire career there, serving as Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1825-1835), Prof of Greek, and Provost. Rare for a TCD man, he was a supporter of Catholic Emancipation.

Wikipedia / TCD / Snipview

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18. ESPNEP10 Humphrey Lloyd (1800-1881) was born 16 April in Dublin, and was educated at TCD (Scholar 1818, BA 1819, Fellow 1824, MA 1827, DD 1840). He succeeded his father as Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1831-1843), then became Senior Fellow. He authored several books, including A Treatise On Light and Vision (1831), Lectures on the Wave-theory of Light (two volumes, 1836 & 1841), and The Elements of Optics (1849), and was President of the RIA (1846-1851). Later, again like his father before him, he served as Provost (1867-1881).

Wikipedia / TCD1 / TCD2

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19. APA03 William Rowan Hamilton (1805-1865) was born 3/4 August in Dublin, and grew up there and in Trim, Meath. He was educated at TCD (BA 1827, MA 1837, LLD 1839). He was appointed the third Andrews Professor of Astronomy (and hence effectively Royal Astronomer of Ireland and Director of Dunsink) a few weeks before his graduation, and held those positions until his death. He is Ireland’s most renowned mathematician and mathematical physicist. His extensive legacy includes innovations in algebra, mechanics and optics. He is perhaps most well known for quaternions, a non-commutative algebraic system predating matrices. Cambridge awarded him LLD in 1845 and DCL in 1861. He was the first Foreign Associate of United States National Academy of Sciences.

Wikipedia / MacTutor / TCD / DIB / Papers / Enc Brit / Enc / Hamilton Walk

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20. ESPM09 & ESPNEP11 James MacCullagh (1809–1847) was born at Landahussey, just east of  Plumbridge, Tyrone, and grew up there and near Strabane. He was educated at TCD (Scholar 1827, BA 1829, Fellow 1832, MA 1836, LLB & LLD 1838), and was Erasmus Smith's Professor of Mathematics (1836–1843) and then Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1843-1847). He was very active in the RIA, serving as Secretary (1842-1846). In his too-short life he made many contributions to optics and geometry; Jellet & Houghton published his collected works in the early 1880s.

Wikipedia / MacTutor /DNB / Ulster Bio / Hist Soc / Papers / Buttimer / Scaife

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21. ESPNEP12 Robert Dixon (1812-1885) was born 22 October in Dublin, and was educated at TCD (BA 1833, Fellow 1838, MA 1839, DD 1862). He was Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1848-1854), and authored the book Treatise on Heat, Part 1: The Thermometer; Dilation; Change of State; And Laws of Vapours (1849), but left TCD in 1853 to spend the rest of his career as a clergyman.

Wikipedia

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22. ESPM10 Charles Graves (1812–1899) was born in Dublin and was educated at TCD (Scholar, BA 1834, Fellow 1836, MA 1838). He spent the first half of his career there, serving as Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1843-1862). Then he left TCD for the life of a clergyman, eventually becoming a bishop. However he published mathematics for half a century, and was president of the RIA (1861-1866). He had two notable brothers, mathematician John and Hamilton biographer Robert.

Wikipedia / Obit / Papers

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23. ESPM11 Michael Roberts (1817–1882) was born 18 April in Cork city, and was educated at TCD (Scholar 1836, BA 1838, Fellow 1843, MA 1848, Senior Fellow 1879). He was appointed inaugural Prof of Maths at Queen's College, Galway, in 1848, but resigned before the first students arrived in 1849. He published mathematics over a several decade period, and was Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1862-1879). His twin William was also a TCD maths man, who served as Donegall Lecturer in Maths (1867-1876).

Wikipedia / DNB / Family

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24. ESPNP01 John Jellett (1817-1888) was born 25 December in Cashel, Tipperary, and was educated at TCD (Scholar 1836, BA 1837, Fellow 1840, MA 1843, BD 1866, Senior Fellow 1870, DD 1881). He was the inaugural University Professor of Natural Philosophy (1847-1870), a position with an experimental physics focus created to complement the more theoretical Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy. He was President of RIA (1869-1874). He authored the books A Treatise of the Calculus of Variations (1850), and A Treatise on the Theory of Friction (1872), and (with Sam Haughton) he published the collected works of James McCullough (1880). He served as Provost (1881-1888).

Wikipedia / TCD / Ask

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25. ESPNEP13 Joseph Galbraith (1818-1890) was born 29 November in Dublin, and was educated at TCD (BA 1840, MA & Fellow 1844). He was Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1854-1870). He became Senior Fellow and Bursar (1880) and Registrar (1885). It is said that he coined the term "Home Rule".

Wikipedia / RIA / Ask

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26. ESPNP02 Richard Townsend (1821-1884) was born 3 April in Baltimore, Cork, and was educated at TCD (BA 1841, Fellow 1845, MA 1852), where he spent his whole career. He authored the highly regarded Chapters on the Modern Geometry of the Point, Line, and Circle Vol I (1863), and was University Professor of Natural Philosophy (1870-1884).

Wikipedia / Bio / DNB

 

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27. APA04 Astronomer Franz Brünnow (1821–1891) was born 18 November in Berlin, and in 1843 got his doctorate there on "De attractione moleculari" under Enno Dirksen. After holding several observatory positions (Bilk, Berlin, Michigan), he was appointed Royal Astronomer of Ireland, Director of Dunsink and the fourth Andrews Professor of Astronomy (1865-1874).

Wikipedia / IAJ

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28. ESPNP03 Benjamin Williamson (1827–1916) was born in Little Island, Cork, and was educated at TCD (BA 1848, Fellow 1852, MA 1855). He was Donegall Lecturer in Mathematics (1876-1884), and University Professor of Natural Philosophy (1884-1890). he also served as vice provost. His books included popular ones on calculus which were used for many decades. TCD awarded him DSc (1891), and Oxford DCL (1892).

Wikipedia / Nature

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29. ESPNEP14 John Leslie (1831?–1881) was born in Timoleague, Cork, and was educated at TCD (BA 1852, MA 1856, Fellow 1858, DD 1862). He was Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1870-1881).

Wikipedia

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30. UPNP05 Frederick Purser (1839–1910) was born in Dublin, younger brother of mathematician John, and was educated at TCD (Scholar 1859, BA 1860, MA 1864, Fellow 1879). He was University Professor of Natural Philosophy (1902-1910).

Wikipedia

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31. ESPM12 W. Snow Burnside (1839–1920) was born 20 December near Fivemiletown, Tyrone, and was educated at TCD (BA 1862, MA 1866, Fellow 1871, DSc 1891), and taught there for over forty years. He was Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1879–1914), and co-authored the influential book The Theory of Equations: With an Introduction to the Theory of Binary Algebraic Forms (1881). He was also a senior dean.

Wikipedia / Obit

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32. APA05 Robert Ball (1840-1913) was born 1 July in Dublin, and was educated at TCD (BA 1861, MA 1864, DSc 1891). After a decade at Birr and the Royal College of Science, he became Director of Dunsink, Royal Astronomer of Ireland and the fifth Andrews Professor of Astronomy (1874-1892). He spent the last two decades of his career at Cambridge. He was an expert on tides, and in mechanics he invented the screw theory. He authored 10 books, on mechanics and astronomy, and is believed to have given about 2500 public lectures.

Wikipedia / MacTutor / Hist of Sci / Who's Who / Ask / Memoirs

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33. UPNP04 Francis Tarleton (1841-1920)was born in Monaghan, and was educated at TCD (BA 1861, MA 1865, DSc 1891), where he worked for over half a century, seving as bursar, senior dean, and vice provost. He was University Professor of Natural Philosophy (1890-1902), and authored books on dynamics and the mathematical theory of attraction.

Wikipedia / TCD / Nature

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34. ESPNEP15 George FitzGerald (1851–1901) was born 3 August in Dublin and was educated at TCD (Scholar 1870, BA 1871, MA 1874, Fellow 1877, DSc 1891).  He was Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1881-1901). He was a pioneer in electromagnetic theory, and his name lives on today in the Lorentz–FitzGerald contraction.

Wikipedia / MacTutor / Enc Brit / TCD

 

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35. ESPM14 Robert Russell (1858?–1938) was born 18 May near Portadown, Armagh, and was educated at TCD (Scholar 1877, BA 1880, Fellow, MA 1888, Senior Fellow 1920). He was Donegall Lecturer of Maths (1904-1907) and Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1917–1921), also serving as junior dean and bursar.

Wikipedia

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36. APA06 Astronomer Arthur Rambaut (1859–1923) was born 21 September in Waterford. He was educated at TCD (Scholar 1880, BA & Gold Medal 1881, MA 1887, DSc 1892). From 1882 to 1897 he was at Dunsink, first as assistant to Robert Ball, and then as director and Royal Astronomer of Ireland, and the sixth Andrews Professor of Astronomy (1892-1897). He spent the rest of his life at the Radcliffe Observatory in Oxford.

Wikipedia / RAS / Obs / Who's Who / Nature

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37. UPNP06 Matthew Fry (1863-1943) was born in Kilkeedy parish, Clare, and grew up there and near Roscrea, Tipperary. He was educated at TCD (BA 1885, MA & Fellow 1889), and was then appointed Assistant to the Professor of Natural Philosophy, Frederick Purser. Upon the latter's death, Fry became University Professor of Natural Philosophy (1910-1925). He also served as junior dean.

Wikipedia / Obit

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38. APA07 Charles Joly (1864-1906) was born 27 June at Hop Hill, near Tullamore, Offaly. He was educated at TCD (Scholar, BA 1886, MA 1889?). He spent 1886-1887 in Berlin studying at the lab of Helmholtz & Koenig, then returned to TCD, publishing regularly, and obtaining Fellowship (1894) and DSc (1901). He was Director of Dunsink, Royal Astronomer of Ireland, and the seventh Andrews Professor of Astronomy (1897-1906) until his untimely death. He published new editions of Hamilton's books Elements of Quaternions (1899 & 1901) and his own A Manual of Quaternions (1905). He was also Secretary of the RIA. 

Wikipedia / Royal Soc / Obit

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39. ESPNEP16 Willy Thrift (1870-1942) was born 28 February in Yorkshire, England, and grew up in Carlow. He was educated at TCD (BA 1893, MA 1896). He was Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1901-1929), got DSc in 1936, and served as Provost (1937-1942). He was also active in politics, serving at TD several times in the 1920s-1930s. His sister Lily and brother Harry also did maths degrees, that latter also working at TCD for many years.jj

Wikipedia / Nature

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40. APA08 Edmund Whittaker (1873–1956) was born 24 October in Southport, Lancashire, England, and was educated at Cambridge (BA as second wrangler 1895).  After a decade teaching at Cambridge, he became Astronomer Royal of Ireland and Andrews Professor of Astronomy (1906-1911). The rest of his career was spent at Edinburgh. His PhD students included UCD's Phil Gormley, whose contemporary Dick Timoney also studied under him in the early 1930s. NUI awarded him an honorary DSc (1939), and de Valera used his counsel while setting up the DIAS.

Wikipedia / MacTutor / Aether / Science

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41. ESPM13  Stephen Kelleher (1875–1917) was born 11 June in Cork city, and was educated at first at Queen's College there (BA 1895, MA 1896). He then studied at TCD (Scholar 1900, BA & Large Gold Medal 1902, MA 1906). In 1904 he became a Fellow, which was very unusual at the time for a Catholic. He was appointed assistant to the Professor of Natural Philosophy in 1910, and then Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1914–1917), dying relatively young.

Wikipedia / Who Was Who

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42. APA09 Henry Plummer (1875–1946) was born 24 October in Oxford, and was educated there (BA 1897?). He taught at Owen College (Manchester) before Radcliffe Observatory (1900-1912). He was Royal Astronomer of Ireland, and the ninth Andrews Professor of Astronomy (1912-1921; both titles were then retired). He spent the rest of his career at the Military College of Science in Woolwich.

Wikipedia / St Edward's / Royal Soc

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43. ESPM15 Charles Rowe (1893–1943) was born 5 February in Cork city, and was educated at first at UCC (BA 1913, MA 1914), where he won an NUI Travelling Studentship Prize.  He moved to TCD (Scholar 1914, BA & Large Gold Medal 1917, Fellow 1920), and spent 1920-1921 in Paris, studying under Hadamard, Lebesgue, and Goursat. Upon his return to TCD he was made acting Professor of Maths; he was also Donegall Lecturer in Maths (1923-1926). He was finally appointed Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1926-1943), and supervised TCD's first mathematical PhD student (1932). He spoke at ICM 1932.

Wikipedia

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44. ESPM16. TS (Stan) Broderick (1893–1962) was born 22 May in Youghal, Cork, and was educated at first at UCC (BA 1913, MA 1916), where he won an NUI Travelling Studentship Prize.  His too moved to TCD (Scholar 1917, BA 1918). He taught for a while in Exeter, and was Donegall Lecturer in Maths (1926-1944). He was then appointed Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1944-1962). In 1930 he became a Fellow, in 1958 a Senior Fellow, and in 1959 acting Vice Provost.

Wikipedia

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45. ESPNP07 John L. Synge (1897–1995) was born on 23 Mar in Dublin, and grew up there and in Cavan. He was educated at TCD (Scholar 1916, BA 1919, MSc 1922, DSc 1926), and worked at the University of Toronto before becoming University Professor of Natural Philosophy (1925-1930). The rest of his career was spent back at Toronto, as well as in the USA, and finally at DIAS (1948-1972). He spoke at ICM 1924, 1932 and 1936, and played a key role in the foundation of the Fields Medal. He supervised many theses and wrote over a dozen books. He is credited with the introduction of a new geometrical approach to the special and general theories of relativity. His daughter Cathleen Morawetz (1923-2017) had a successful mathematical career at the Courant Institute in the USA.

Wikipedia / MacTutor / RDS / Royal Soc

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46. ESPNEP17 Physicist Robert Ditchburn (1903–1987) was born 14 January in Waterloo, Lancashire, England, and was educated at first at Liverpool (BSc 1922). His 1928 PhD was done at Cavendish Lab, as the last research student of J.J. Thomson. He won a TCD Fellowship (1928) and became Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1929-1946). The rest of his career was spent at Reading.

Wikipedia / Bio

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47. UPNP08 Albert McConnell (1903-1993) was born 19 November in Ballymena, Antrim, and was educated at TCD (BA 1926) and at La Sapienza University in Rome. His doctorate (on "Stability Inside a Gravitational Field") was done under Tullio Levi-Civita in 1928, the same year he spoke at ICM. He spent his entire career at TCD, from 1930 to 1957 as University Prof of Natural Philosophy. He also served as Provost and wrote two books, one on Riemannian geometry and tensor calculus.

Wikipedia / TCD / Ulster Bio

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48. ESPNEP18 Physicist Ernest Walton (1903–1995) was born in Dungarvan, Waterford, and his family moved around Ireland a great deal when he was young. He first studied maths and physics at TCD (BA 1926, MSc 1927 by thesis under JL Synge). At Cambridge, he engaged in research which culminated in a PhD under Ernest Rutherford in 1931. His "splitting the atom" with John Cockroft lead to the two men later sharing a Nobel prize. He lectured at TCD for four decades, from 1946–1974 as Erasmus Smith's Prof of Natural & Experimental Philosophy.

Nobel / Wikipedia / TCD

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49. ESPM18 Gabriel Dirac (1925–1984) was born (as Balázs Gábor) 13 March in Budapest, and grew up there and in England.  He was educated at Cambridge (BA 1946?, MA 1949) and the University of London (PhD 1952), his thesis "On the Colouring of Graphs: Combinatorial topology of Linear Complexes" being done under Richard Rado.  He worked at the Universities of Vienna and Hamburg before becoming Erasmus Smith's Professor of Maths (1964–1966). His later career was spent at Swansea and Aarhus.

Wikipedia

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50. UPNP09 Roy Chisholm (1926–2015) was born 26 November in Barnet, London. He was educated at Cambridge (BA 1948, PhD 1952). His thesis on "The Calculation of S-matrix elements and Magnetic Moments" was done with Nicholas Kemmer & Ireland's Jim Hamilton. After holding positions at Glasgow and Cardiff he was appointed University Professor of Natural Philosophy (1962-1965). The rest of his career was spent at the University of Kent (Canterbury), where he became the first professor of applied maths in 1965.

Wikipedia / IOP / Memories 

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51. ESPM17 Heini Halberstam (1926–2014) was born 11 September in Czechoslovakia and grew up there and in England, where he was educated at the University of London (BSc 1949?, PhD 1952).  His thesis on "Some Results in Analytic Number Theory" was done with Theodor Esterman. After a decade of teaching at  Exeter and Royal Holloway, in 1962 he become Erasmus Smith's Professor of Maths (and head of department) at TCD, but only stayed 2 years.  The rest of his career was spent at Nottingham (1964-1980) and then at Urbana-Champaign (1980-1996).

Wikipedia / Obit 1 / Obit 2 / Obit 3

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52. APA10 Astronomer Patrick Wayman (1927–1998) was born 8 October in Bromley, Kent, England. He was educated at Cambridge (BA 1950?, PhD 1952), his thesis on "Applications of Atmospheric Optics to Astronomy" being done with Hubert Linfoot. He worked at the Royal  Greenwich Observatory until 1964, when he became Director at Dunsink, a position he held until his death. From 1984 on he was also honorary Andrews Professor of Astronomy.  He received an honorary DSc from NUI (1991).

Irish Times / Obit

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53. ESPM19 Brian Murdoch (1930– ) was born in Dublin and educated at TCD (BA 1951), and at Princeton, where in 1955 he earned a PhD on "Preharmonic functions" under probabalist William Feller.  From 1957 on, his career was back at TCD, where he took MA (1965) and was Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (1966–1989). His principal interests were in random walks, stochastic processes and probability.

Wikipedia

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54. ESPNEP19 Physicist Brian Henderson (1936-2017) was born 26 March near Doncaster, Yorkshire, England. He was educated at the University of Birmingham (BSc 1958, PhD 1960). His thesis was on "The Lattice Spacings of Alloys with Reference to Electronic Constitution". After 6 years each at Harwell and Keele, he became Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural & Experimental Philosophy in 1974, following the long tenure of Walton. During his decade in Dublin, TCD awarded him a Fellowship (1976) and an honorary DSc (1979). The rest of his career was spent at Strathclyde. His books include Optical Spectroscopy of Inorganic Solids co-authored with UCG's George Imbusch (Clarendon, 1989).

Wikipedia / IOP

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55. ESPNP10 T.D. (David) Spearman (1937- ) was born 25 March in Dublin, and was educated at TCD (BA 1959) and Cambridge (PhD 1961). His thesis on "Problems in Pion Physics" was done with Ireland's Jim Hamilton. After a few years at the University of Illinois (Urbana Champaign) and Durham, he was appointed Erasmus Smith's Prof of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1966-1997) at TCD. He became Fellow in 1969, and co-authored the book Elementary Particle Theory (1970). He later wrote the definitive 400 years of Mathematics at TCD (1592-1992). He supervised 3 doctoral theses, and served as head of the department of pure and applied maths, bursar, vice-provost and pro-chancellor. He was also President of the RIA (1999-2002).

Wikipedia / TCD

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56. ESPNEP20 Denis Weaire (1942- ) was born 17 October in Dalhousie, India, and was brought up mostly in Belfast. He was educated at Cambridge (BA 1964, PhD 1968). His thesis on "Pseudopotential Theory of the Structure of Metals" was done with Volker Heine. After a decade at Harvard, Yale and Heriot-Watt, he returned to Ireland.  He was at UCD (1980-1984), followed by appointment as Erasmus Smith Prof of Natural & Experimental Philosophy (1984-2007). He is best known for the 1993 Weaire-Phelan geometric construction which improved on an old Kelvin conjecture about space packing. He has supervised numerous PhD students and authored or edited 8 books.

Wikipedia / TCD

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57. ESPNEP21 Physicist Michael Coey (1945- ) was born 24 February in Belfast and was educated at first at Cambridge (BA 1966). He did his PhD on "Mössbauer Effect of 57Fe in Magnetic Oxides," at the university of Manitoba under Allan Morrish. His career started at CNRS (Grenoble), and since 1978 he has been at TCD (Fellow 1982). He was the 21st and last serving Erasmus Smith's Prof of Natural and Experimental Philosophy (2007-2012). He has over 50 PhD students and 7 books to his name.

Wikipedia / TCD

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58. APA11 Astrophysicist Luke Drury (1953- ) was born in Dublin and was educated at TCD (BA 1975) and at Cambridge (PhD 1979). His thesis on "Some Fluid Dynamical Problems in Astrophysics" was done with John Stewart. After 7 years at MPI Heidelberg, he joined DIAS in 1986, from which he recently retired. From 2007-2018 he served as honorary Andrews Professor of Astronomy. He had 2 PhD students.

DIAS

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59. UPNP11 Samson Shatashvili (1960- ) was born in the Republic of Georgia and was educated at Tbilisi State University (BSc 1981) and the Steklov Institute of Mathematics (PhD 1984). His thesis on "Modern Problems in Gauge Theories" was done under Ludvig Faddeev & Vladimir Korepin. He was at Steklov Institute St Petersburg (1985-1990) and Yale (1994-2002) before being appointed University Professor of Natural Philosophy in 2002.

Wikipedia / TCD

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60. ESPM20 Paul Feehan (1961- ) was born in Dublin and was educated at first in electrical engineering at UCD (BE 1982) and the Univ of Missouri, Rolla, Miss (ME 1984). He then did a masters in maths at the University of Southern California (1987). His 1992 PhD on "Geometry of the Moduli Space of Self-Dual Connections on the Four-Sphere" was done at Columbia under Duong Phong. He was at MSRI (1992-1993), Harvard (1993-1997) and Ohio State (1997-2000) before being appointed Erasmus Smith Prof of Maths at TCD in 2000. Since 2001 he has been at Rutgers, were he has supervised 7 PhD students.

Wikipedia / Rutgers

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61. APA12 Luciano Rezzolla (1967- ) was born in Milan, Italy. He was educated at the University of Bari and the University of Trieste (BSc), and later at SISSA, obtaining his 1996 PhD on "General Relativistic Hydrodynamics of Compressible Multicomponent Fluids: Developments and Applications" under John Miller. His career so far has been spent at SISSA, MPI Potsdam, and the Goethe University of Frankfurt. In 2019 he was appointed honorary Andrews Professor of Astronomy.

Wikipedia  / AAAS

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62. ESPM21 Adrian Constantin (1970- ) was born in Temeswar, Romania. He was educated at the University of Nice Sophia-Antipolis (BSc 1991, MSc 1992) and at NYU, his 1996 PhD on "The Periodic Problem for the Camassa-Holm Equation" being done with Henry McKean. He taught at the University of Lund before serving as Erasmus Smith's Prof of Maths (2004–2008). Since then he has been at the University of Vienna, and he has also had a chair at King's College London.

Wikipedia / Wien