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300 Years of Growth

William Allman (1809-1844)

William AllmanWilliam Allman, the son of Thomas Allman, was born in Kingston, Jamaica on February 7th 1776 and came to Ireland in 1780. He was educated in Waterford, his mother’s native town, and in Trinity College Dublin (TCD) where he obtained a scholarship, and graduated B.A. in 1796, M.A. in 1801, and M.D. in 1804. He practiced medicine in Clonmel, County Tipperary until he was appointed Professor of Botany in TCD in 1809. He was a friend of the eminent botanist Robert Brown, and arranged his lectures in 1812 on the Natural System, being the first person in Britain or Ireland to do so. He retired in 1844, being succeeded by his probably unrelated namesake G.J. Allman (see below), and died shortly thereafter on 8th December 1846. As well as publishing on botanical topics, he was also interested in mathematics (e.g. Allman, 1841). One of his sons was George Johnston Allman not, as has been stated by Praeger (1949), George James Allman: the former was a Professor of Mathematics in Queen’s University, Belfast and the latter succeeded William Allman as Professor of Botany in TCD. The Amaranthaceous genus Allmania was named in William’s honour by Robert Brown in 1832.

Allman, W. (1814). Methods of clearing Equations of quadratic, cubic, quadratocubic, and higher Surds. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, 104: 23-44.

Praeger, R.Ll. (1949). Some Irish Naturalists. A biographical notebook. W. Tempest, Dundalgan Press, Dundalk. Pp. 208.


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