Canterbury, Kent

Mathematical Gazetteer of the British Isles


Several mathematical scholars have been archbishop of Canterbury. The most notable was Thomas Bradwardine (c1290-1349), a leader of the Merton School at Oxford, who is buried in St Anselm's Chapel; a brass plate marks the spot. He died of the Black Death in 1349.
St Anselm (c1033-1109), known for his ontological 'proof' of the existence of God, was archbishop from 1093. A chapel was consecrated to him in 2006
See THIS LINK

John Pecham (c1230-1292), archbishop in 1279-1292, was a mathematician and student of optics.

William Laud (1573-1645), archbishop from 1633 until his execution at the Tower of London, was a mathematician and taught at St John's, Oxford, to which he left his collection of mathematical instruments.

Frederick Temple (1821-1902), archbishop from 1896, is, as a mathematician, best known for his earlier erroneous attempt on the Four Colour Theorem. He is buried in the cloister garth with a memorial stone carved by Eric Gill. A statue of him at prayer is nearby in the Corona.
See THIS LINK

William Frend (1757 1841) was born in Canterbury. Perhaps best known as Augustus De Morgan's father-in-law, he was a radical Cambridge fellow and a leading opponent of the use of negative numbers in the early 19C. This sounds a bit negative, but a coherent definition did not arise for another generation and the opposition of mathematicians such as Frend was a major driving force in the development of proper foundations.

There are mathematical tiles in Canterbury: see THIS LINK


The Mathematical Gazetteer of the British Isles was created by David Singmaster.
The original site is at THIS LINK.