Sophie Germain's Life And Accomplishments

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Sophie Germain- a Woman Brave Enough to Study Math in the Time of Men. On April 1, 1776, a genius was born. That Genius was Sophie Germain- scientist, mathematician, and one of the most incredible women to ever walk this earth. Amanda Swift, a graduate of Agnes Scott College, said, “Sophie Germain was born in an era of revolution. In the year of her birth, the American Revolution began. Thirteen years later the French Revolution began in her own country. In many ways Sophie embodied the spirit of revolution into which she was born. She was a middle class female who went against the wishes of her family and the social prejudices of the time to become a highly recognized mathematician. Like the member of a revolution, her life was full of perseverance…show more content…
Her father was a silk merchant, who later served in the Estates Général. Miss Germain had two sisters, Marie-Madeleine and Angelique-Ambroise. It is possible that she went by Sophie Germain because both her mother and sister were called Marie. Sophie’s sisters both married, (to a government official and a physician) but Sophie never married and died childless. The year Sophie turned 13, the Bastille fell and the French revolution began. To protect their young daughter from the chaos of war, Mr. and Mrs. Germain kept her in the house at all times. To combat the inevitable boredom that staying home all day must have caused, Sophie read from her father’s extensive library. On one of those long days, Sophie found a book about the death of Archimedes. The legend goes that Archimedes had been studying a geometric concept written in the dirt, and had failed to answer the questions of a roman soldier- this angered the soldier, and Archimedes was beheaded, still studying his geometry in the dirt. A young Sophie decided that if a subject could be so interesting that one might die for it, it was certainly a worthy topic to devote her mind

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