Math scholars around the world considered Leonhard Euler as one of the greats. His prolific understanding in solving equations without writing down made him legendary. His discoveries paved the way for an easier way of learning the challenging world of Algebra, Calculus, Geometry, Trigonometry, and Physics. His contributions to Astronomy, Optics, Lunar Theory, and even Music Theory also added to his prominence.
Leonhard Euler Facts
1. He is arguably the greatest mathematician in the 18th Century
Complicated math problems were often solved by Leonhard Euler during his time. Even prominent math practitioners back in the 18th century had acknowledged his remarkable mental superpowers since most of them had given up in solving those complex problems. It is not surprising that this Swiss mathematician is being labeled as one of the Greatest of All Time, an interesting fact about Leonhard Euler.
2. Euler Introduced the use of f(x), e, i, Σ in solving math problems
Modern mathematics would not be what it is today without this significant contribution. Leonhard Euler introduced the concept of math notations such as those mentioned above, thus making it easier to analyze and solve math problems. This unique technique of using symbols made it possible for people today to collaborate and exchange math theories globally.
3. Leonhard Euler Popularized the use of π
While the symbol π or pi was first introduced in 1706 by William Jones, it was not popularly known until Leonhard Euler decided to utilize it in 1737. His regular use of the symbol π when referring to the ratio of circumference to diameter in a circle while documenting his mathematical analysis helped in standardizing pi, as seen in his numerous published articles and books.
4. Two important math numbers are named after Leonhard Euler
Students who love Mathematics will undoubtedly remember his name. The “e” and the “γ” in the equations are known as “Euler’s Number” and “Euler Constant,” respectively. An interesting fact about Leonhard Euler is that no other mathematician, past or present, has the distinct honor of having two numbers named after them.
5. He created the most beautiful mathematical equation: “Euler’s Identity”
The eiπ + 1 = 0, also known as Euler’s Identity, is arguably the most beautiful mathematical equation that was ever invented. The math wizard had this uncanny ability to make formulations that are integral in the fields of arithmetic, calculus and trigonometry. Scholars globally believed that it is one of the most exceptional combinations of math equations that he created out of several theorems he put out there. The Euler’s Identity is composed of the very symbols that Euler himself either invented or popularized.
6. Euler Earned his Master’s Degree at the young age of 17
Leonhard Euler was supposed to follow his father’s footsteps and become a pastor in his Ministry. However, his father’s friend Johann Bernoulli, who was also a popular 18th century Math wizard, convinced them otherwise. Bernoulli was giving the young Euler private lessons and discovered his remarkable flair in mathematics. At 13 years old, he entered the University of Basel in Switzerland and at age 17, he received his Master’s degree. He is a genius, indeed.
7. Leonhard Euler Has a photographic memory
Having a photographic memory helped Leonhard Euler in his educational attainment at an early age. An interesting Leonhard Euler fact is that he could easily remember poems, essays, and novels word for word. One of the popular stories about this astounding skill is that he could recite Virgil’s Aeneid from beginning to end without even looking at the book. What makes the story more incredible is that he could even pinpoint from what page and from what edition of the book a paragraph came from.
8. Euler is pronounced as “Oiler”
Most people can easily enumerate his achievements but unfortunately most of the time they mispronounce his name. Euler should be pronounced as “Oiler” not “Yuler”.
9. He is known for calculating and computing in his head
One of the many proofs of Leonhard Euler’s brilliance is that he is known to calculate in his head. A couple of students were trying to sum up a complicated series but when they reached a certain decimal point, they could not agree on a specific answer. Euler easily solved the problem accurately by just computing in his mind without the use of a pen and paper.
10. He wrote around 800 articles and books half of which when he was already blind
In 1776, at the age of 59, Leonhard Euler was almost deprived of his sense of sight due to the cataract in his right eye. His left eye was already damaged after a near death experience due to fever when he was 31 years old. It did not help that his eye surgery was a dismal failure. Later on he would attribute this disability to the cartography work he did in St. Petersburg.
However, just like most geniuses, it did not hamper his productivity. His determination to pursue his mathematical inclinations appeared to have doubled. With the help of a competent assistant and his legendary photographic memory, he was able to continue his passion for writing. In his lifetime, he authored around 800 books and papers about the different areas in Mathematics and the Sciences, a crazy Leonhard Euler fact.
11. A minor planet or asteroid was named after this Swiss Mathematician
When an asteroid was discovered in 1973 by a Russian astronomer at the Crimean Astrophysical Observatory, they named it “2002 Euler” in honor of Leonhard Euler. During the time of announcement back in 1977, the asteroid was still considered as a minor planet. They chose him because of his successful stint with the Imperial Russian Academy of Sciences in St. Petersburg and his contributions to Astronomy along with his lunar theories.
12. He was featured in Postage Stamps in Switzerland, Germany, and Russia
Leonhard Euler’s significant contribution earned him commemoration postage stamps not only in his home country Switzerland but also in Germany and Russia. His international career started at St. Petersburg Academy back in 1727 in Russia. However, due to political unrest, he decided to go to Berlin and served under Frederick the Great in 1741. After 25 years, he went back to Russia with an invitation from Catherine II herself to work at St. Petersburg Academy once again.
Leonhard Euler truly deserved to be hailed as one of the greatest mathematicians of all time. He may have invented many things back in the 18th century but most of his proven theories are still relevant up to this day.
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