22 December 1887 -- 26 April 1920
About the author
Who says maths is boring ?
A trip to Kumbakonam, in Tamilnadu, India, is usually seen as an
opportunity to visit the innumerable number of Temples and shrines in the region. For me, it was a very different experience. This web page is the result of all the introspection and study I did following my memorable visit to Kumbakonam (in June 2016).
Kumbakonam is closely related to a genius called
Srinivasa Ramanujan, the outstanding Indian mathematician, who made extraordinary contributions
to mathematical analysis, number theory, infinite series, and continued fractions.
My trip to Kumbakonam, gave me the chance to visit two sacred
and inspiring places which reminded me
of Srinivasa Ramanujan :
- The house where Srinivasa Ramanujan lived.
- The school where Srinivasa Ramanujan studied.
The house where Srinivasa Ramanujan lived
Do NOT get carried away by the looks of this house. This is where the mathematician inside Ramanujan grew up and
blossomed. This old, tiny, unimpressive, tiled house is an inspiring monument which will remind visitors about the genius called
The house is
flanked by two unlikely neighbours (who were most certainly not there when Ramaujan was around) :
The saving grace comes from the efforts of a
nearby University which has acquired the house,
and made it into a memorial monument for the greatest modern
mathematician born in India. But for this initiative, Ramanujan's house
would have been long since devoured by these business-minded commercant neighbours.
- A meat-vending, "non-vegetarian" restaurant (Ramanujan was a strict vegetarian coming from an orthodox Hindu,
Surprisingly, this incongruous neighbour is also located at a stone's throw from a very important
and sacred Hindu temple. (But, why should anyone care for such trivia ?).
- A huge store/shop selling construction materials.
The place is very cleanly maintained, and is open the
whole day (usual working hours), seven days a week, with free-of-cost entry, and must be visited by all admirers of mathematics.
The school where Srinivasa Ramanujan studied
This 152 year old school
(known earlier as Town High School), boasts of having initiated Ramanujan
into mathematics. It has now on proud display, a bust of its most famous student. Many people visit this
school today, to draw inspiration from the
"man who knew infinity".
This school is a landmark in itself, and is located in Kumbakonam downtown. Ramanujan's home
(mentioned above) is just about a kilometre away (approximately a 15 minute walk).
The next time you visit Kumbakonam, make sure you drop in at the above two places.
I feel sad to report these discoveries:
Where ignorance is bliss
Where ignorance is bliss ... a
The mystery of the missing museum
Take a look at :
Casting pearls before ...
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