^^Hamilton, William Rowan Sir (1805-1865)


  1. child prodigy. Acquired varying degrees of proficiency with 13 different languages
  2. appointed Professor of Astronomy at Trinity College, Dublin (age 22)
  3. theoretical prediction of “conical refraction” by biaxial crystals in 1832 — experimentally verified the same year
  4. Hamiltonian mechanics: systematic derivation of equations of motion for complicated dynamical systems with multiple degrees of freedom — paved way for development of quantum mechanics
  5. interpretation of complex numbers as “theory of algebraic couples
  6. latter career devoted to (failed) effort to establish quaternions as the “new language of science”