William Rowan Hamilton

1805 - 1865

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Sir William Rowan Hamilton LL.D, DCL, MRIA, FRAS (3/4 August 1805 – 2 September 1865) was an Irish mathematician, Andrews Professor of Astronomy at Trinity College Dublin, and Royal Astronomer of Ireland at Dunsink Observatory. He made major contributions to optics, classical mechanics and abstract algebra. His work was of importance to theoretical physics, particularly his reformulation of Newtonian mechanics, now called Hamiltonian mechanics. Read more on Wikipedia

Since 2007, the English Wikipedia page of William Rowan Hamilton has received more than 715,173 page views. His biography is available in 68 different languages on Wikipedia (up from 66 in 2019). William Rowan Hamilton is the 83rd most popular physicist (up from 90th in 2019), the 20th most popular biography from Ireland (down from 18th in 2019) and the most popular Irish Physicist.

William Rowan Hamilton is most famous for his work in mathematics. He is credited with inventing quaternions, a four-dimensional number system.

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Among physicists, William Rowan Hamilton ranks 83 out of 721Before him are Jean Baptiste Perrin, Victor Francis Hess, Albert A. Michelson, Owen Willans Richardson, Lawrence Bragg, and Arnold Sommerfeld. After him are Edward Teller, C. V. Raman, Dennis Gabor, James Franck, Arthur Compton, and Aage Bohr.

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Among people born in 1805, William Rowan Hamilton ranks 7Before him are Hans Christian Andersen, Alexis de Tocqueville, Peter Gustav Lejeune Dirichlet, Giuseppe Mazzini, Princess Sophie of Bavaria, and Joseph Smith. After him are Ferdinand de Lesseps, Louis Auguste Blanqui, Fanny Mendelssohn, Franz Xaver Winterhalter, Maria Anna of Bavaria, and Jean Eugène Robert-Houdin. Among people deceased in 1865, William Rowan Hamilton ranks 7Before him are Abraham Lincoln, Ignaz Semmelweis, John Wilkes Booth, Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, Leopold I of Belgium, and Emil Lenz. After him are Anna Pavlovna of Russia, Henry John Temple, 3rd Viscount Palmerston, Nicholas Alexandrovich, Tsesarevich of Russia, Johann Franz Encke, Robert FitzRoy, and Elizabeth Gaskell.

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In Ireland

Among people born in Ireland, William Rowan Hamilton ranks 20 out of 460Before him are Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington (1769), Pierce Brosnan (1953), John Scotus Eriugena (810), Anne Bonny (1702), Richard Harris (1930), and W. B. Yeats (1865). After him are Laurence Sterne (1713), Ernest Shackleton (1874), Columbanus (540), Katie McGrath (1983), Michael Collins (1890), and Enya (1961).

Among PHYSICISTS In Ireland

Among physicists born in Ireland, William Rowan Hamilton ranks 1After him are John Tyndall (1820), Ernest Walton (1903), George Johnstone Stoney (1826), George Francis FitzGerald (1851), John Sealy Townsend (1868), and John Joly (1857).