Alfred Russel Wallace, OM, FRS (8 January 1823 – 7 November 1913) was a British naturalist, explorer, geographer, anthropologist and biologist. He is best known for independently proposing a theory of evolution due to natural selection that prompted Charles Darwin to publish his own theory.
Johann Carl Friedrich Gauss (30 April 1777 – 23 February 1855) was a German mathematician and scientist who contributed significantly to many fields, including number theory, statistics, analysis, differential geometry, geodesy, geophysics, electrostatics, astronomy and optics.
Sir Charles Lyell, 1st Baronet, Kt FRS (14 November 1797 – 22 February 1875) was a British lawyer and the foremost geologist of his day. He is best known as the author of Principles of Geology, which popularised uniformitarianism – the idea that the earth was shaped by slow-moving forces still in operation today. Lyell was a close and influential friend of Charles Darwin.
Edward Waring (circa 1736 – 15 August 1798) was an English mathematician who was born in Old Heath, Shropshire, England and died in Pontesbury, Shropshire, England. He entered Magdalene College, Cambridge as a sizar and became Senior wrangler in 1757. He was elected a Fellow of Magdalene and in 1760 Lucasian Professor of Mathematics, holding the chair until his death. He made the assertion known as Waring's Problem without proof in his writings Meditationes Algebraicae.
Francis Harry Compton Crick OM FRS (8 June 1916 – 28 July 2004), was a British molecular biologist, physicist, and neuroscientist, and most noted for being one of two co-discoverers of the structure of the DNA molecule in 1953, together with James D. Watson. He, James D.
Sir Humphry Davy, 1st Baronet FRS MRIA (17 December 1778 – 29 May 1829) was a British chemist and inventor. He is probably best remembered today for his discoveries of several alkali and alkaline earth metals, as well as contributions to the discoveries of the elemental nature of chlorine and iodine. He invented the Davy lamp, which allowed miners to enter gassy workings.
Captain James Cook FRS RN (7 November 1728 – 14 February 1779) was an English explorer, navigator and cartographer, ultimately rising to the rank of Captain in the Royal Navy. Cook was the first to map Newfoundland prior to making three voyages to the Pacific Ocean during which he achieved the first European contact with the eastern coastline of Australia and the Hawaiian Islands as well as the first recorded circumnavigation of New Zealand.
Justus von Liebig (12 May 1803 – 18 April 1873) was a German chemist who made major contributions to agricultural and biological chemistry, and worked on the organization of organic chemistry. As a professor, he devised the modern laboratory-oriented teaching method, and for such innovations, he is regarded as one of the greatest chemistry teachers of all time.
John Maynard Smith, F.R.S. (6 January 1920 – 19 April 2004) was a British theoretical evolutionary biologist and geneticist. Originally an aeronautical engineer during the Second World War, he then took a second degree in genetics under the well-known biologist J.B.S. Haldane. Maynard Smith was instrumental in the application of game theory to evolution and theorized on other problems such as the evolution of sex and signalling theory.
John Harrison (24 March 1693 – 24 March 1776) was a self-educated English clockmaker. He invented the marine chronometer, a long-sought device in solving the problem of establishing the East-West position or longitude of a ship at sea, thus revolutionising and extending the possibility of safe long distance sea travel in the Age of Sail.
Joseph Lister, 1st Baron Lister, OM, FRS, PC (5 April 1827 – 10 February 1912) was an English surgeon and a pioneer of antiseptic surgery, who promoted the idea of sterile surgery while working at the Glasgow Royal Infirmary. Lister successfully introduced carbolic acid to sterilise surgical instruments and to clean wounds, which led to reduced post-operative infections and made surgery safer for patients.
Jean Louis Rodolphe Agassiz (May 28, 1807 – December 14, 1873) was a paleontologist, glaciologist, and geologist, and was a prominent innovator in the study of the Earth's natural history. He grew up in Switzerland and became a professor of natural history at University of Neuchâtel. Later, he accepted a professorship at Harvard University in the United States.
John William Strutt, 3rd Baron Rayleigh OM (12 November 1842 – 30 June 1919) was an English physicist who, with William Ramsay, discovered the element argon, an achievement for which he earned the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1904. He also discovered the phenomenon now called Rayleigh scattering, explaining why the sky is blue, and predicted the existence of the surface waves now known as Rayleigh waves.
Michael Faraday, FRS (22 September 1791 – 25 August 1867) was an English chemist and physicist (or natural philosopher, in the terminology of the time) who contributed to the fields of electromagnetism and electrochemistry. Faraday studied the magnetic field around a conductor carrying a DC electric current, and established the basis for the electromagnetic field concept in physics. He discovered electromagnetic induction, diamagnetism, and laws of electrolysis.
Max Planck (April 23, 1858 – October 4, 1947) was a German physicist. He is considered to be the founder of the quantum theory, and thus one of the most important physicists of the twentieth century. Planck was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1918.
Sir Michael Francis Atiyah, OM, FRS, FRSE (born 22 April 1929) is a Britishmathematician, and one of the most influential mathematicians of the twentieth century. He grew up in Sudan and Egypt, and spent most of his academic life at Oxford, Cambridge, and the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton.
Niels Henrik David Bohr (7 October 1885 – 18 November 1962) was a Danish physicist who made foundational contributions to understanding atomic structure and quantum mechanics, for which he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1922. Bohr mentored and collaborated with many of the top physicists of the century at his institute in Copenhagen. He was part of a team of physicists working on the Manhattan Project.
Paul Adrien Maurice Dirac, OM, FRS (8 August 1902 – 20 October 1984) was a British theoretical physicist. Dirac made fundamental contributions to the early development of both quantum mechanics and quantum electrodynamics. He held the Lucasian Chair of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge and spent the last fourteen years of his life at Florida State University.
Robert Wilhelm Eberhard Bunsen (30 March 1811 – 16 August 1899) was a German chemist. He investigated emission spectra of heated elements, and with Gustav Kirchhoff discovered caesium (in 1860) and rubidium (in 1861). Bunsen developed several gas-analytical methods, was a pioneer in photochemistry, and did early work in the field of organoarsenic chemistry. With his laboratory assistant, Peter Desaga, he developed the Bunsen burner, an improvement on the laboratory burners then in use.
Sir Roger Penrose, OM, FRS (born 8 August 1931) is an English mathematical physicist and Emeritus Rouse Ball Professor of Mathematics at the Mathematical Institute, University of Oxford and Emeritus Fellow of Wadham College. He has received a number of prizes and awards, including the 1988 Wolf Prize for physics which he shared with Stephen Hawking for their contribution to our understanding of the universe.
Sir William Crookes, OM, FRS (17 June 1832 – 4 April 1919) was a chemist and physicist who attended the Royal College of Chemistry, in London, and worked on spectroscopy. He was pioneer of vacuum tubes, inventing the Crookes tube.