9.7.1845 Down House/UK - 7.12.1912 Cambridge/UK
George Howard Darwin was the fifth son of the famous British naturalist Charles Robert Darwin. George attended Trinity College, Cambridge, from which he graduated in 1868. He was there elected fellow and began in 1875 the series of mathematical papers that eventually formed the four volumes of his Scientific papers. In 1879 he was elected Fellow of the Royal Society and in 1883 he was appointed Plumian professor of astronomy and experimental philosophy at Cambridge, a position he held for the rest of his life. Darwin received several distinctions, including in 1905 the knighthood. He died of cancer and was buried at Trumpington Cemetery.
Darwin's paper On the influence of geological changes on the Earth's axis of rotation, published in 1876, marked the beginning of his investigations of geophysical problems. This work was directly inspired by Lord Kelvin (1824-1907), whose great interest in the young Darwin has been the chief influence in his decision to make science his career. Papers published from 1879 to 1880 are concerned with the tides in viscous spheroids, and still show the influence of both Lord Kelvin and Pierre-Siméon Laplace (1749-1827). Darwin therein proposed the "resonance theory" of the origin of the moon, according to which the moon might have originated from the fission of a parent earth as the result of an instability produced by resonant solar tides. From 1883, Darwin made investigations on the equilibrium figures of rotating fluid masses and, later, making extensive studies of periodic orbits in the restricted problem of three bodies, carried out with special reference to cases obtaining for the particular values of the mass ratio of two finite bodies such as of Jupiter and the sun. Darwin was an applied mathematician of the school of Kelvin and George Gabriel Stokes (1819-1903) and was content to study physical phenomena by the mathematical methods cost convenient to the purpose.
Anonymous (1912). The late Prof. Sir George Darwin, FRS. Engineering 94: 818.
Darwin, G.H. (1879). On the precession of a viscous spheroid and on the remote history of the Earth. Philosophical Trans. Royal Society 170 A: 447-538.
Darwin, G.H. (1898). The tides and kindred phenomena in the solar system. London. Darwin, G.H. (1907). Scientific papers. University: Cambridge. P Kopal, Z. (1971). G. Darwin. Dictionary of scientific biography http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/%7Ehistory/Mathematicians/Darwin.html 3: 582-584. Scribner: New York. http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/%7Ehistory/Mathematicians/Darwin.html http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/DARWINhistory/Mathematicians/Darwin.html P http://encyclopedia.laborlawtalk.com/Image:George_Howard_Darwin.jpg P

Hydraulicians in Europe 1800-2000 . 2013.

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