He was an Indian Mathematician. Though he had almost no formal training in pure mathematics, he made substantial contributions to mathematical analysis, number theory, infinite series, and continued fractions, including solutions to mathematical problems then considered unsolvable. English mathematician G. H. Hardy considered him to mathematical geniuses such as Euler and Jacobi.
A deeply religious Hindu, He once said,” An equation for me has no meaning, unless it expresses a thought of God.”
In college, He excelled in Mathematics but failed in other subjects like Sanskrit, English, physiology, caused a man with no Degree. It leads him jobless, living in extreme poverty and often on the brink of starvation for some days.
He was Indian Mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan. Ramanujan was born on 22 December 1887 into a Tamil family in Tamil Nadu, India. They lived in a small traditional home in the town of Kumbakonam. The family home is now a museum.
On 1 October 1892 Ramanujan was enrolled at the local school. He did not like school in Madras, and tried to avoid attending. In 1897, Ramanujan entered Town Higher Secondary School, where he encountered formal mathematics for the first time. By age 11, he had exhausted the mathematical knowledge of two college students who were lodgers at his home. He was later lent a book written by S. L. Loney on advanced trigonometry. He mastered this by the age of 13 while discovering sophisticated theorems on his own. By 14 he received merit certificates and academic awards that continued throughout his school career.He completed mathematical exams in half the allotted time, and showed a familiarity with geometry and infinite series. Ramanujan was shown how to solve cubic equations in 1902; he developed his own method to solve the quartic. His peers at the time said they “rarely understood him” and “stood in respectful awe” of him.
When he graduated from Town Higher Secondary School in 1904, Ramanujan received a scholarship to study at Government Arts College, Kumbakonam, but was so intent on mathematics that he could not focus on any other subjects and failed most of them, losing his scholarship in the process.In 1910, after a meeting between the 23-year-old Ramanujan and the founder of the Indian Mathematical Society, an Indian Mathematician V. Ramaswamy Aiyer, Ramanujan began to get recognition in Madras’s mathematical circles, leading to his inclusion as a researcher at the University of Madras.
On 14 July 1909, Ramanujan married Janaki. 3 years later, In 1912 she and Ramanujan’s mother joined Ramanujan in Madras. Ramanujan stayed at a friend’s house while he went from door to door around Madras looking for a clerical position. To make money, he tutored students at Presidency College who were preparing for their F.A. exam. In May 1913, upon securing a research position at Madras University, The Ramanujan moved with his family to Triplicane.
Journey of Indian Mathematician to Cambridge University
In 1913, he began a postal partnership with the English mathematician G. H. Hardy at the University of Cambridge, England.
Recognizing the Indian Mathematician Ramanujan’s work as extraordinary, Hardy arranged for him to travel to Cambridge. In his notes, Hardy commented that Ramanujan had produced groundbreaking new theorems, including some that “defeated me completely; I had never seen anything in the least like them before”, and some recently proven but highly advanced results, comparing the Indian Mathematician Ramanujan to mathematical geniuses such as Euler and Jacobi.
Ramanujan departed from Madras aboard on 17 March 1914. After reaching Cambridge University, the Indian Mathematician immediately began his work with Mathematicians Littlewood and Hardy, with whom he had shared his theorem with letters. Hardy and Littlewood began to look at Ramanujan’s notebooks. Hardy had already received 120 theorems from Ramanujan in the first two letters, but there were many more results and theorems in the notebooks. Hardy saw that some were wrong, others had already been discovered, and the rest were new breakthroughs.Ramanujan left a deep impression on Hardy and Littlewood.
The Great Indian Mathematician Ramanujan spent nearly five years in Cambridge collaborating with Hardy and Littlewood, and published part of his findings there. Ramanujan was awarded a PhD in March 1916 for his work on highly composite numbers. This great Indian Mathematician was elected to the London Mathematical Society, was also elected a Fellow of the Royal Society. At age 31 Ramanujan was one of the youngest Fellows in the history of the Royal Society. In 1918 he was the first Indian to be elected a Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge.
Health Issue & Death of the Great Indian Mathematician
Ramanujan was plagued by health problems throughout his life. His health worsened in England. He was diagnosed with tuberculosis and a severe vitamin deficiency, and confined to a sanatorium. In 1919 he returned to Kumbakonam, Madras Presidency, and in 1920 the great Indian Mathematician died at the age of 32. After his death his brother Tirunarayanan compiled Ramanujan’s remaining handwritten notes, consisting of formulae on singular moduli, hypergeometric series and continued fractions.
During his short life, the Great Indian Mathematician Ramanujan independently compiled nearly 3,900 results. Many of his results, such as the Ramanujan prime, the Ramanujan theta function, partition formulae and mock theta functions, have opened entire new areas of work and inspired a vast amount of further research.His “lost notebook“, containing discoveries from the last year of his life, caused great excitement among mathematicians when it was rediscovered in 1976.
Ramanujan has been described as a person of a somewhat shy and quiet disposition, a dignified man with pleasant manners.He lived a simple life at Cambridge.