H. F. Baker

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Professor Henry Baker
Henry Frederick Baker.jpg
Henry Frederick Baker (1866-1956)
Henry Frederick Baker

(1866-07-03)3 July 1866
Died17 March 1956(1956-03-17) (aged 89)
Alma materSt John's College, Cambridge
Scientific career
InstitutionsUniversity of Cambridge
Doctoral advisorArthur Cayley[1]
Doctoral students

Henry Frederick Baker FRS[2] FRSE (3 July 1866 – 17 March 1956) was a British mathematician, working mainly in algebraic geometry, but also remembered for contributions to partial differential equations (related to what would become known as solitons), and Lie groups.[3]

Early life[edit]

He was born in Cambridge the son of Henry Baker, a butler, and Sarah Ann Britham.[4]


He was educated at The Perse School before winning a scholarship to St John's College, Cambridge in October 1884. Baker graduated as Senior Wrangler in 1887, bracketed with 3 others.[5]


Baker was elected Fellow of St John's in 1888 where he remained for 68 years.

In June, 1898 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society.[2][6] In 1911, he gave the presidential address to the London Mathematical Society.

In January 1914 he was appointed Lowndean Professor of Astronomy.

Gordon Welchman recalled that in the 1930s before the war Dennis Babbage and he were members of a group of geometers known as Professor Baker's "Tea Party", who met once a week to discuss the areas of research in which we were all interested.[7]

He married twice. Firstly in 1893 to Lilly Isabella Hamfield Klopp, who died in 1903, then he remarried in 1913, to Muriel Irene Woodyard.

He died in Cambridge and is buried at the Parish of the Ascension Burial Ground, with his second wife Muriel (1885 - 1956).

See also[edit]