Carl Friedrich Gauss

June 12, 2011
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Carl Friedrich Gauss was perhaps the greatest German mathematician yet. Carl Friedrich Gauss aka Johann Friedrich Carl Gauss was born 30-Apr-1777 in Brunswick, Germany, but died unexpectedly on 23-Feb-1855 in Gottingen, Germany. His remains now lie buried in Albanifriedhof, Gottingen, Germany. He was a white German straight male that worked as a mathematician, scientist, and cartographer. How did Carl become the mathematician that he is known today? Well, he showed signs of his abilities throughout his young childhood, adulthood, and as well as his “senior” years.
Carl was the son of a domineering, illiterate, unkind and uncouth bricklayer. His parents, father, Gerhard, a laborer, canal tender and bricklayer, encouraged him only to what he saw as useful, laboring tasks, but his mother, Dorothea, who herself had a talented younger brother Friedrich, recognized his talents and encouraged him to pursue them. There marriage was an unhappy one it that, and his mother was the second wife of his father. His mother became blind and lived to be 97, and died in the year 1839. As a child he showed his talent and abilities for the mathematical world, which was unreal because he grew up living in a household that had no education and was poor. He taught himself to read and to calculate before the age of three. Only at the age of three he informed his father of an arithmetical error in a complicated payroll calculation, and told him the correct sum, which is un-normal for a three year old to know how to do such a thing and to be able to do calculations on that intelligent level of thinking. When he was in school as a young boy, his teachers gave him and his classroom challenging work, but it wasn’t so challenging to him. One of his teachers gave the class a problem to sum up all the integers one-one hundred, and he started to immediately write down the correct answer, 5050, on his slate. He found his answer by doing all the calculations in this mind, which is amazing because even I, have a hard time figuring out simple equations in my mind let alone on a calculator occasionally. At the age of four-teen, he received a stipend (a periodic payment, especially a scholarship or fellowship allowance granted to a student. ) from the duke of Brunswick, which allowed him to pursue his studies for six-teen years. When he was nine-teen yrs old he proved that the heptadecagon, a regular polygon of seven-teen sides, could be made with a compass and a straightedge, known as a construction. Gauss proved that it doesn’t matter what age you are to be intelligent. Intelligence comes in all shapes, sizes, and ages. Gauss proved at a very young age that he was very intelligent, but most three year olds would not be able to figure out what he did.
During his adult life, he had to deal with complications and tragic events because of the French Revolution, the Napoleonic period, and the democratic revolutions in Germany. He suffered from political turmoil and financial security. He also had to work for most of his life because he couldn’t find any fellow mathematical collaborators. Not all of his entire life is full of tragic and complications, but with all those tragic and complications, he was able to find love and happiness. In 1805, he married Johann Osthoff, and had a son and daughter shortly after her death in 1809. His son was Joseph, who was born in 1806, but died in 1873, and his daughter was Wilhelmina, who was born two years after Joseph, but died in 1846, which is 27 years less than when Joseph died. After his marriage to Johann, he then married her best friend, Minna Waldeck, and they had three children together. Minna and Carl had a son named Eugene, who was born in 1811, but died in 1896. Then they had another son named Wilhelm, who was born in 1813, but died in 1879. Finally they had a daughter named Therese, who was born in 1816, but sadly died in 1864. It was not uncommon that the children died young because so many diseases where spread back then due to the fact that doctors didn’t have anything to cure them and they didn’t know what the diseases where and the side affects. Supposedly, Gauss was rarely unhappy; his wife had tuberculosis and was rarely well. He did not allow his children to study science because he doubted their work and didn’t think it could ever match up to his abilities. Before his married life took off, in 1795 Carl studied at the University of Gottingen. During his studies at the University of Gottingen, he researched to find that the discoveries he had made previously had already been discovered. He earned his doctorate in 1799, and later became interested in astrology which led to the invention of the heliotrope. Carl had a lot of accomplishments in his life even when he was a young child, and he wanted to see his kids do the same, but when he noticed that they don’t have the abilities like their father has he didn’t want them to even waste their time on it because he knew they wouldn’t be smart enough to studied toughs sorts of intelligence.
While Gauss got tired of his second career so he took geodesy has his third career in 1817. He then worked with a man by the name of Wilhelm Weber in the 1830’s on electricity and magnetism. They soon both created a worktable telegraph, and which made Gauss honored for his accomplishments by having a unit of magnetism named after him “gauss”. When Gauss hit his older years in developed heart disease, but he had been under doctor’s care for one year. He then later died at the age of 77 in his sleep on April 23, 1855.
Gauss proved his intelligence when he was no later than three years old. His entire life he has made his own accomplishments and has done things that some people wish they could do at there young age that he has done. Carl is one of those people in history that can show kids that it doesn’t matter how old you are, everyone is intelligent, but you just have to work hard to accomplish what you want in life and you will earn it. He died before some of his children, which made him unable to see them grow up and see them become adults that he thought that they would become in their life time. Now I understand why he is the greatest German mathematician because he accomplished so many things at a young age and his accomplishments still affects everyday life to some people today. His accomplishments will always be with us today and beyond. Now reader, you should learn from Carl that pursuing your dreams and just believing in yourself might actually get you to achieve those goals that you have in life. Don’t allow others to think for you. Instead make your own decisions and just enjoy doing what you love the most and don’t allow someone to tell you others wise.

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