The Lucasian Chair of Mathematics is a mathematics professorship in the University of Cambridge, England; its holder is known as Lucasian Professor. The post was founded in 1663 by Henry Lucas, who was Cambridge University's Member of Parliament from 1639–1640; and it was officially established by King Charles II on January 18, 1664. It is recognized as one of the most prestigious academic posts in the world and its former holders include Isaac Newton, Joseph Larmor, George Stokes, Paul Dirac and Stephen Hawking.
History of the Chair 
Lucas, in his will, bequeathed his library of 4,000 volumes to the university and left instruction for the purchase of land whose yielding should provide £100 a year for the founding of a professorship. One of the stipulations in Lucas' will was that the holder of the professorship should not be active in the church. Isaac Newton later appealed to King Charles II that this requirement excused him from taking holy orders, which was compulsory for most fellows of the university at that time (some fellowships were exempt). The King supported Newton, and excused all holders of the professorship, in perpetuity, from the requirement to take holy orders.
The current holder of the post is the theoretical physicist Michael Green who is currently a fellow in Clare Hall at the University of Cambridge. He was appointed in October 2009, succeeding Stephen Hawking who retired in September 2009, in the year of his 67th birthday, as required by the University. Hawking now holds the position of Emeritus Lucasian Professor of Mathematics.
List of Lucasian Professors 
See also 
- Kevin Knox and Richard Noakes, From Newton to Hawking: A History of Cambridge University's Lucasian Professors of Mathematics ISBN 0-521-66310-5