1805 – Hamilton – bio

William Rowan Hamilton was born in 1805 in Dublin, Ireland and was a mathematician, physicist and astronomer.

In mathematics, he studied number theory and various forms of algebras, eventually producing an extension to complex numbers (combinations of real numbers and “imaginary” units that involve the square root of negative one) that is known as quaternions. Rodriques and Gauss also discovered quaternions independently from Hamilton.

In physics, Hamilton reformulated the mechanics of Lagrange to create Hamiltonian mechanics which eventually served as a bridge to quantum mechanics. At the center of this, the Hamilton-Jacobi equation allows the motion of a particle to be represented as a wave, in a similar manner to the Schrodinger equation.

PRECURSOR:
-0325 – Euclid
1642 – Newton
1707 – Euler
1736 – Lagrange
1749 – Laplace
1768 – Fourier
1777 – Gauss
1781 – Poisson

CONCURRENT:
1795 – Rodrigues
1802 – Abel
1804 – Jacobi
1806 – Graves
1809 – Grassman
1809 – Liouville

SUBSEQUENT:
1839 – Gibbs
1845 – Clifford
1850 – Heaviside
1854 – Poincare
1887 – Schrodinger
1903 – Kolmogorov

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