Leonhard Euler.

Essay by BoludayBonitaCollege, Undergraduate May 2003

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Leonhard Euler is a recognized Swiss mathematician who is considered to be a pioneer in algebra and number theory (Simonis 68). The man not only contributed in the subject of algebra but also in mechanics, optics, and lunar motion. Not only did he contribute greatly to math but also his life was full of accomplishments such as receiving his master's degree at the age of 17 and receiving a second place award for the best arrangement of masts on a ship (O'Connor). However Euler's contribution was ended when he died suddenly at the age of seventy-six and blind.

Leonhard Euler was born in Basel, Switzerland on April 15, 1707 to a Protestant family which led him to be a devout Christian all of his life (O'Connor). Euler whose father was a Protestant minister and his mother who was the daughter of a minister wished for their son to educate himself and enter the ministry.

Therefore he was sent to the University of Basel where he received his general education. But at this time Johann Bernoulli who was studying with Euler encouraged him to study the field of mathematics. In 1723 Euler completed his Master's degree in philosophy (O'Connor). From there on his career took on a different path which was the one of mathematics. One of his earliest accomplishments was the one of receiving a second place award for submitting an entry on the best arrangement of masts on a ship. The 1727 Grand Prize of the Paris Academy was given to someone else. In this same year he accepted a post offered him at the St. Petersburg Academy of Science in Russia (Simonis 68). Besides accepting this offer at the academy he was also part of the Russian navy from the year 1727 to the year 1730. At the...