Gresham Professor of Geometry

From computation to the history of mathematics, the Professorship in Geometry and Other Mathematical Sciences is now over 400 years old. Besides the illustrious modern incumbents, Gresham College is proud to boast Robert Hooke as one of our former Professors.

Next lecture

Tuesday 20 January 2015
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Current Professor

Raymond Flood has spent most of his academic life promoting mathematics and computing to adult audiences, mainly through his position as University Lecturer at Oxford University, in the Continuing Education Department and at Kellogg College. In parallel he has worked extensively on the history of mathematics, producing many books and writing diverse educational material.

He is Emeritus Fellow of Kellogg College, Oxford, having been Vice-President of the College and...

Past professors

1 Henry Briggs - 1596/97
2 Peter Turner - 1620
3 John Greaves - 1630/31
4 Ralph Button - 1643
5 Daniel Whistler - 1648
6 Laurence Rooke - 1657
7 Isaac Barrow - 1662
8 Arthur Dacres - 1664
9 Robert Hooke - 1664/65
10 Andrew Tooke - 1704
11 Thomas Tomlinson - 1729
12 George Newland - 1731/32
13 William Roman - 1749
14 Wilfred Clarke - 1759
15 S Kittleby - 1765
16 Samuel Birch - 1808
17 Robert Pitt Edkins - 1848
18 Benjamin Morgan Cowie - 1854
19 Karl Pearson - 1890
20 William Henry Wagstaff - 1894
21 Louis Melville Milne-Thomson - 1946
22 Thomas A A Broadbent - 1956
23 Sir Bryan Thwaites - 1969
24 Clive W Kilmister - 1972
25 Sir Christopher Zeeman - 1988
26 Ian Stewart - 1994
27 Sir Roger Penrose FRS - 1998
28 Harold Thimbleby - 2001
29 Robin Wilson - 2004
30 John D. Barrow - 2008
31 Raymond Flood - 2012

All Gresham Professor of Geometry lectures

Cantor's Infinities Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 17 March 2015
Möbius and his Band Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 17 February 2015
Fourier's Series Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 20 January 2015
Euler's Exponentials Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 18 November 2014
Newton's Laws Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 21 October 2014
Fermat's Theorems Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 16 September 2014
Modelling the Spread of Infectious Diseases Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 18 March 2014
Probability and its Limits Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 18 February 2014
Surfaces and Topology Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 21 January 2014
Symmetries and Groups Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 19 November 2013
Public Key Cryptography: Secrecy in Public Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 22 October 2013
Butterflies, Chaos and Fractals Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 17 September 2013
Modelling the World Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 19 March 2013
Are Averages Typical? Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 19 February 2013
The Queen of Mathematics Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 22 January 2013
From One to Many Geometries Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 11 December 2012
Polynomials and their Roots Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 6 November 2012
Ghosts of Departed Quantities: Calculus and its Limits Professor Raymond Flood Tuesday 25 September 2012
Final Score Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 24 April 2012
On the Waterfront Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 27 March 2012
Let’s Twist Again: Throwing, Jumping, and Spinning Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 21 February 2012
Citius, Altius, Fortius: Records, Medals and Drug Taking Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 17 January 2012
David and Goliath: Strength and Power in Sport Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 13 December 2011
How Fast Can Usain Bolt Run? Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 15 November 2011
Doing Business in Interstellar Space Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 1 March 2011
Benford’s Very Strange Law Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 1 February 2011
The Uses of Irrationality: Paper Sizes and the Golden Ratio Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 11 January 2011
The Bounce of the Superball Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 7 December 2010
Continued Fractions Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 16 November 2010
Maths with Pictures Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 5 October 2010
Maths and Sport Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 9 March 2010
Trains and Boats and Planes Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 9 February 2010
Codebreaking in Everyday Life Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 12 January 2010
The Maths of Sorting Things Out Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 24 November 2009
Brilliant-cut diamonds and other tricks of the light Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 27 October 2009
A Sense of Balance Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 6 October 2009
How to be a Winner: The maths of race fixing and money laundering Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 3 March 2009
Some Interesting Curves Professor John D Barrow FRS Thursday 29 January 2009
The maths of pylon, art galleries and prisons under the spotlight Professor John D Barrow FRS Monday 12 January 2009
Harmonic things Professor John D Barrow FRS Thursday 11 December 2008
The importance of being peripheral Professor John D Barrow FRS Tuesday 25 November 2008
Not just about numbers Professor John D Barrow FRS Thursday 9 October 2008
400 years of geometry at Gresham College Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 14 May 2008
From Hilbert's problems to the future Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 27 February 2008
A millennium of mathematical puzzles Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 6 February 2008
Squaring the circle and other impossibilities Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 16 January 2008
4000 years of numbers Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 7 November 2007
4000 Years of Algebra Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 17 October 2007
4000 Years of Geometry Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 3 October 2007
Euler - 300th anniversary lecture Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 9 May 2007
The story of e Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 28 February 2007
The story of i Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 7 February 2007
The story of pi Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 17 January 2007
Mathematics in the 20th century: Chaos, codes and colouring Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 15 November 2006
Mathematics in the modern age - The 19th century: Revolution or evolution? Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 25 October 2006
Mathematics in the modern age - The 18th century: Crossing bridges Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 4 October 2006
YEA, WHY TRY HER RAW WET HAT? Professor Robin Wilson Tuesday 2 May 2006
Problems with schoolgirls Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 22 February 2006
How to grow trees Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 1 February 2006
Wallpaper Patterns and Buckyballs Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 18 January 2006
Who invented the calculus? - and other 17th century topics Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 16 November 2005
Who invented the equals sign? Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 26 October 2005
Who invented algebra? Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 5 October 2005
How hard is a hard problem? Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 9 March 2005
Prime-time mathematics Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 2 February 2005
Much ado about zero Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 17 November 2004
Here’s looking at Euclid Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 27 October 2004
Keep taking the tablets Professor Robin Wilson Wednesday 6 October 2004
Better programming Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 13 May 2004
Computer Circles Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 26 February 2004
Plugging Computers In Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 27 November 2003
Magic Pictures Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 30 October 2003
Unplugging computers Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 9 October 2003
Design by Symmetry Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 27 March 2003
Designing Anything: From Lego to Maths Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 13 March 2003
Designing for humans Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 13 February 2003
Designing Mobile Phones Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 28 November 2002
Designing Microwave Cookers Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 24 October 2002
The Computer Science of Everyday Things Professor Harold Thimbleby Tuesday 15 October 2002
Designing gadgets Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 26 September 2002
Computer Viruses Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 21 March 2002
Modern Crytography Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 28 February 2002
Conventional Cryptography Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 21 February 2002
Future Computers Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 24 January 2002
From Henry Briggs to Modern Calculators Professor Harold Thimbleby Thursday 29 November 2001
Queen Dido’s Hide Professor Ian Stewart FRS Tuesday 10 March 1998
Why Have Sex? Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 11 February 1998
The Geometry of Evolution Professor Ian Stewart FRS Tuesday 20 January 1998
Beyond the Four Colour Theorem Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 19 November 1997
Travels with my Ant Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 29 October 1997
Hearing the Shape of a Drum Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 15 October 1997
Chippendale’s Lost Geometry Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 21 May 1997
Turing's Tiger Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 9 April 1997
Four Centuries of Logarithms Professor Ian Stewart FRS Monday 27 January 1997
Chaos and the Quantum Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 4 December 1996
Games, Graphs and Gaskets Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 9 October 1996
The Practical Fractal Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 2 October 1996
From Footballs to Fullerenes Professor Ian Stewart FRS Tuesday 14 May 1996
Fibonacci’s Fractional Flowers: Mathematics Patterns in Seeds and Petals Professor Ian Stewart FRS Thursday 14 March 1996
Furiously Flashing Fireflies: Synchronised Signalling in the Mating Game Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 7 February 1996
Fermat’s Final Fling: Last Days of the Last Theorem Professor Ian Stewart FRS Monday 4 December 1995
Factorials, Fortunes and Fallacies Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 25 October 1995
Faggot’s Fretful Fiasco: The Unsung Geometry of Musical Scales Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 4 October 1995
Fuzzy Logic Professor Ian Stewart FRS Thursday 16 March 1995
The Riddle of the Vanishing Camel: From Puzzles to Number Theory Professor Ian Stewart FRS Wednesday 15 February 1995
The Pattern of Tiny Feet: The Mathematics of Animal Movement Professor Ian Stewart FRS Thursday 24 November 1994
Marilyn and the Goats: Probability Paradoxes Professor Ian Stewart FRS Thursday 3 November 1994
The Geometry of Time Travel Professor Ian Stewart FRS Thursday 20 October 1994
Mathematics Applied to Dressmaking Sir Christopher Zeeman Tuesday 9 March 1993
Introduction to Catastrophe Theory and its Application to Physics and Sociology Sir Christopher Zeeman Monday 24 April 1989
Gyroscopes and Boomerangs Sir Christopher Zeeman Monday 21 November 1988
Pictorial Representation: The Twentieth Century Professor Clive Kilmister Tuesday 17 March 1987
Pictorial Representation: Nomography Professor Clive Kilmister Wednesday 4 March 1987
Pictorial Representation: The Slide Rule Professor Clive Kilmister Tuesday 24 February 1987
Why Geometry? Professor Clive Kilmister Wednesday 3 December 1986

Further information

Did you know... John Barrow, current Gresham Professor of Geometry, was formerly the Gresham Professor of Astronomy?
This is a feat achieved only once before, by Lawrence Rooke, Professor of Astronomy and then of Geometry in the mid 17th century.

Also... When Karl Pearson, perhaps the most important mathematician of modern statistics, was Gresham Professor of Geometry between 1891 and 1893, his lectures used interesting props. For instance, lectures in his series on 'The Geometry of Statistics and The Laws of Chance' were illustrated by the use of dice, roulette results and 10,000 pennies scattered on the floor!

For an overview of the early Professors of Geometry at Gresham College, please see this lecture by Professor Henry Briggs, Gresham Professor, 1597-1620 (courtesy of Professor Robin Wilson):






The event's page for this lecture can be accessed here: 400 Years of Geometry at Gresham College