Mathematics has been around for a long, long time. It started out of a human desire to understand the world around them and to give explanations and rules to events that a part of life. Mathematicians try and find patterns to solve problems and get to the truth or falsity of a problem by mathematical proof. Some basic problems are what started it all – the need to count, calculate or measure the shapes and motions of objects. The basic things out of the top of your head, simply – a way to count apples or measure the surface of a field or even the volume of a 3D object. These are the **10 best mathematicians of all time** that really made an impact that will probably never fade:

## 1. Pythagoras (around 570 – 495 BC)

We simply can’t start our list without mentioning this mythic figure from Greece. Some people doubt it’s the name of one mathematician, and suspect it’s a group of people publishing theorems under that name. Whatever the case might be, it’s irrefutable how much Pythagoras influenced the field of mathematics. The reason for this being the most famous name when mathematics is mentioned is a theorem about triangles. It states that the square of the hypotenuse (the longest side) is equal to the sum of the squares of the other two sides. Of course, the theorem is just a fraction of his works, but it’s something we can all recite out of the top of our head.

## 2. Leonhard Euler (1707-1783)

You might not remember him, but he was not only a mathematician but also an engineer, physicist, astronomer and many more. His contribution is recognized the most when it comes to infinitesimal calculus, as well as graph theory. He published nearly 900 books, even though he went blind in his 50s. That, of course, only boosted his productivity. You might not remember the formula he’s famous for, but it’s important to notice that he even has a mathematical constant (e) which is known as Euler’s number. Just a fun fact – his contribution brought the possibility for today’s sudoku.

## 3. Carl Friedrich Gauss (1777-1855)

Gauss is often called a prince of mathematicians, and unlike Euler, he didn’t make his works public until he was sure he improved and reworked them to the maximum. He was known to be a perfectionist, and many of the revolutionary theorems and findings were only discovered after his death. For example, after he passed away, it was realized from his notes that he found out a measurement error created a bell curve – a shape we now know as Gaussian distribution.

## 4. Euclid (around 322-275 BC)

There are actually two people named Euclid that are well-known – one is a student of Socrates, and the one we’re talking about now – Euclid of Alexandria, which makes him a Greek/Egypt-based revolutionary mathematician. He founded and directed a school of mathematics in Alexandria, and while not too much is known about his life, one is certain. His works had an insane influence in the area of arithmetics, for example. Even though his mathematical proof wasn’t complete, he managed to produce a Fundamental Theorem of Arithmetics and devised a proof called Euclid’s algorithm to compute **gcd (greatest common divisor).**

## 5. Archimedes (287-212 BC)

Yet another Greek genius, and a student of Euclid’s in his school of mathematics at the University of Alexandria. However, he surpassed his teacher, and is widely acclaimed and acknowledged as the greatest ancient mathematician. His mathematical proofs are considered brilliant, and some things Euclid struggled to prove, Archimedes did with immense clarity which awed the readers. He contributed to the world of algebra, number theory, analysis, and plane and solid geometry.

## 6. Isaac Newton (1642-1726)

Of course, Isaac had to take one spot on our list, because he’s one of the most widely recognized physicists, but he was also a famous mathematician. He was even a Professor of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge. Forget the Laws of Motion, Gravitation, and Cooling, even without those he’d be famous for his contribution to mathematics. He’s known as Father of Calculus and shares credit with Leibniz for stating a Fundamental Theorem of Calculus. He found ways to find areas, lengths of curves, tangents, min and max of functions, and much more.

## 7. Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz (1646-1716)

Mathematics was just a side-line profession of Leibniz, and yet he was brilliant. His childhood IQ was considered to be second-highest, with only Goethe in front. He was a philosopher, lawyer, inventor, and diplomat. He started with mathematics late in life but contributed to mathematics along with Newton. We can thank him for notations such as integrals (∫f(x)dx, df(x) / dx, and he was the reason we now use **a · b** (with a dot) instead of

**a X b**. It goes so far to him inventing all the terms we use today –

*analysis, variable, abscissa, function, coordinate, parameter*. We’d say that’s pretty influential, for sure.

## 8. Georg Friedrich Bernhard Riemann (1826-1866)

Although of very poor physical health, and died early, he managed to have his name remembered for centuries. He made advances in complex analysis, topology and number theory. We now know of Riemann integrals, and a term he invented – manifolds, and a theory to follow. Additionally, he invented differential geometry, tensor analysis, the theory of functions, and brought new possibilities for the geometry of space. And it’s no wonder – he had Carl Gauss as a teacher!

## 9. Srinivasa Ramanujan (1887-1920)

We’ve decided to include a name you might not find familiar since he’s rarely mentioned, but that’s a mistake, and many people are missing out on hearing of his achievements. Srinivasa was actually self-taught, a college dropout born in a poor family, living off of charity his friends gave him. However, he never stopped learning, filling notebooks with his thoughts and solutions. He struggled to succeed in India, and only after writing to mathematicians of Cambridge, and receiving a response from G.J. Hardy who was excited to accept him as a research scholar. Srinivasa’s notebooks that were left after his death are still studied to this day.

## 10. Grigori Perelman

Enough about Ancient Greek mathematicians, or geniuses that died a century or more ago – we have a guy to match them in our midst today. A Russian mathematician that is out of the public’s eye, humble and spending days in his apartment reaching the new highs when it comes to the field. He’s known for being extremely humble even though he managed to prove a conjecture called Poincare’s conjecture – the only one from Millennium Prize problems solved so far. He refused to accept the reward, crediting another mathematician’s work for allowing him to get a mathematical proof, and because he didn’t want to be “on display like an animal in a zoo”. We can say with certainty – we just can’t wait to see what he achieves next!

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