Famous Irish Mathematicians

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Sir William Rowan Hamilton
Birthdate: August 4, 1805
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Dublin, Ireland
Died: September 2, 1865

Son of a Dublin solicitor, Sir William Rowan Hamilton was raised and educated by his priest uncle from age 3. Initially a master of languages such as Latin, Greek, and Persian, Hamilton began deviating to math at 16. He is remembered for his contribution to optics, Hamiltonian mechanics, and algebra.

John Lennox
(mathematician, philosopher of science, university teacher)
John Lennox
Birthdate: November 7, 1943
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Northern Ireland

Apart from being an ace mathematician, John Lennox has also taught at institutes such as Oxford and is an emeritus fellow at Green Templeton College. A Christian apologist, too, he has penned books, such as Can Science Explain Everything?, exploring diverse topics, such as religion and artificial intelligence.

Sir George Stokes, 1st Baronet
Birthdate: August 13, 1819
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Skreen, Ireland
Died: February 1, 1903

Sir George Stokes, 1st Baronet was an Anglo-Irish physicist and mathematician. He studied at Pembroke College, Cambridge, and spent his entire career at the University of Cambridge as the Lucasian Professor of Mathematics. As a physicist, he made key contributions to fluid mechanics and physical optics. He received the Royal Society's Copley Medal in 1893.

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Francis Ysidro Edgeworth
(Economist, Statistician, Lawyer, Mathematician)
Francis Ysidro Edgeworth
Birthdate: February 8, 1845
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: County Longford
Died: February 13, 1926

Francis Ysidro Edgeworth was an Anglo-Irish economist and statistician, known for his significant contributions to the methods of statistics. An autodidact in mathematics and economics, he imaginatively applied mathematics to the fields of economics and statistics, writing several books, including Mathematical Psychics, presenting new ideas on various topics like on the generalized utility function, the indifference curve etc.  .

Joseph Larmor
Joseph Larmor
Birthdate: July 11, 1857
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: County Antrim, Ireland
Died: May 19, 1942

Copley Medal-winning Irish physicist Joseph Larmor is best remembered for his physics book Aether and Matter. Known for his contribution to the fields of thermodynamics and the magnetic field, he now has a crater on the Moon and a scientific phenomenon called Larmor precession named after him.

George Salmon
(Irish Mathematician and Anglican Theologian)
George Salmon
Birthdate: September 25, 1819
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Dublin, Ireland
Died: January 22, 1904

George Salmon initially gained fame as a remarkable mathematician only to switch to theology in his later years. A linen merchant’s son, he graduated from Trinity College on a scholarship and then taught at Trinity and made developments in the study of algebraic geometry. He was later ordained a priest.

John Kells Ingram
Birthdate: July 7, 1823
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Pettigo, Ireland
Died: May 1, 1907

Irish economic historian John Kells Ingram didn’t just excel in math in his younger days but also showed considerable talent in literature and languages, teaching oratory and Greek at Trinity. He is remembered for his extensive work on the Poor Law and also for his contribution to inversive geometry.

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Robert Adrain
Robert Adrain
Birthdate: September 30, 1775
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Carrickfergus, County Antrim, Ireland
Died: August 10, 1843

Irish-born mathematician Robert Adrain moved to the US when he was 23, as a political refugee, after his campaign against the British Crown forces failed. In the US, he taught at various institutes, such as Rutgers and Columbia, and made significant contributions to algebra and statistics.

Abdusalam Abubakar
Birthdate: 1990 AD
Birthplace: Somalia

Once the Nigerian army general, Abdusalam Abubakar also reigned as the president of his country after the death of military ruler Sani Abacha. After coming to power, he abolished all political parties formed by Abacha and brought back a full-fledged civilian government by handing over his power to the elected president Olusegun Obasanjo.

George Darley
Birthdate: 1795 AD
Birthplace: Dublin, Ireland
Died: November 23, 1846

Apart from writing math texts, Irish author George Darley also penned poems and novels and was a talented literary critic. He also wrote as John Lacy for The London Magazine. His stammer and his inability to publish his literary works probably pushed him into depression in his later life.

Mountifort Longfield
Birthdate: 1802 AD
Birthplace: Cork, Ireland
Died: November 21, 1884

The first political economy professor at Trinity College, Mountifort Longfield later also taught law at the institute. A renowned property lawyer, he was named a Queen's Counsel and later became part of the Irish privy council. He also drafted various bills proposed by William Gladstone’s administration.