Person: Salmon, George
George Salmon made many discoveries about ruled surfaces and other surfaces.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- George attended Mr Porter's school in his home town of Cork, in the south of Ireland, and then entered Trinity College, Dublin, in 1834.
- This was not a problem for Salmon, who was an Anglican, but in order to take up the Fellowship that Trinity offered him in 1841 he was required to take holy orders in the Church of Ireland, which indeed he did, being ordained deacon in 1844 and a priest in 1845.
- The mathematics department in Trinity College had some outstanding mathematicians on the staff when Salmon joined them in 1841.
- Although the main topic of interest was synthetic geometry, Salmon only worked in this area for a short time before moving into the area of algebraic geometry.
- Salmon became interested in the algebraic approach to geometry taken by Cayley, Sylvester, Hermite and later by Clebsch.
- To be more accurate, Cayley discovered these but they were enumerated by Salmon.
- As was typical of the time, Salmon's work showed a lack of concern with complete rigour.
- Many of these comments are surprisingly critical of Salmon's style.
- A characteristic of Salmon's work was his love of carrying out lengthy calculations.
- Salmon received many honours for his mathematical contributions.
- We have already noted that Salmon was appointed as a lecturer in divinity in 1845 and from 1848 he held this lectureship as well as being a lecturer in mathematics.
- In 1866 Salmon was appointed Regius Professor of Divinity at Trinity College, Dublin.
- In 1871 Salmon was installed as Chancellor of St Patrick's Cathedral and in 1888 he was appointed Provost of Trinity College.
- Salmon was awarded honorary degrees at Oxford (1868), Cambridge (1874), Edinburgh (1884) and University of Christiana (Oslo) (1902).
Born 25 September 1819, Dublin, Ireland. Died 22 January 1904, Dublin, Ireland.
View full biography at MacTutor
Tags relevant for this person:
Algebra, Geometry, Origin Ireland
Thank you to the contributors under CC BY-SA 4.0!
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive