Byron, Ada Augusta, Countess of Lovelace

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b. 12 December 1815 Piccadilly Terrace, London, England
d. 23 November 1852 East Horsley, Surrey, England
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English mathematician, active in the early development of the calculating machine.
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Educated by a number of governesses in a number of houses from Yorkshire to Ealing, she was the daughter of a hypochondriac mother and her absent, separated, husband, the poet George Gordon, Lord Byron. As a child a mysterious and undiagnosed illness deprived her "of the use of her limbs" and she was "obliged to use crutches". The complaint was probably psychosomatic as it cleared up when she was 17 and was about to attend her first court ball. On 8 July 1835 she was married to William King, 1st Earl of Lovelace. She later bore two sons and a daughter. She was an avid student of science and in particular mathematics, in the course of which Charles Babbage encouraged her. In 1840 Babbage was invited to Turin to present a paper on his analytical engine. In the audience was a young Italian military engineer, L.F.Menabrea, who was later to become a general in Garibaldi's army. The paper was written in French and published in 1842 in the Bibliothèque Universelle de Genève. This text was translated into English and published with extensive annotations by the Countess of Lovelace, appearing in Taylor's Scientific Memoirs. The Countess thoroughly understood and appreciated Babbage's machine and the clarity of her description was so great that it is undoubtedly the best contemporary account of the engine: even Babbage recognized the Countess's description as superior to his own. Ada often visited Babbage in his workshop and listened to his explanations of the structure and use of his engines. She shared with her husband a love of horse-racing and, with Babbage, tried to develop a system for backing horses. Babbage and the Earl apparently stopped their efforts in time, but the Countess lost so heavily that she had to pawn all her family jewels. Her losses at the 1851 Derby alone amounted to £3,200, while borrow-ing a further £1,800 from her husband. This situation involved her in being blackmailed. She became an opium addict due to persistent pain from gastritis, intermittent anorexia and paroxys-mal tachycardia. Charles Babbage was always a great comfort to her, not only for their shared mathematical interests but also as a friend helping in all manner of small services such as taking her dead parrot to the taxidermist. She died after a protracted illness, thought to be cancer, at East Horsley Towers.
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Further Reading
D.Langley Moore, 1977, Ada, Countess of Lovelace: Byron's Legitimate Daughter, John Murray.
P.Morrison and E.Morrison, 1961, Charles Babbage and His Calculating Engine, Dover Publications.
IMcN

Biographical history of technology. - Taylor & Francis e-Librar. . 2005.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ada Augusta Byron — Ada Lovelace Ada Lovelace (auch Ada Augusta Byron, Ada King oder Countess of Lovelace) (* 10. Dezember 1815 in London; † 27. November 1852 ebenda; eigentlich Augusta Ada King Byron, Countess of Lovelace) war eine britische Mathematikerin. Sie war …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Lovelace, Ada King, countess of — ▪ British mathematician original name  Augusta Ada Byron, Lady Byron  born December 10, 1815, Piccadilly Terrace, Middlesex [now in London], England died November 29, 1852, Marylebone, London  English mathematician, an associate of Charles… …   Universalium

  • Lovelace, (Augusta) Ada King, countess of — orig. Lady Augusta Ada Byron born Dec. 10, 1815, London, Eng. died Nov. 29, 1852, London English mathematician. Her father was the poet Lord Byron. In 1835 she married William King, 8th Baron King; when he was created an earl in 1838, she became… …   Universalium

  • Ada Byron — Ada Lovelace Ada Lovelace (auch Ada Augusta Byron, Ada King oder Countess of Lovelace) (* 10. Dezember 1815 in London; † 27. November 1852 ebenda; eigentlich Augusta Ada King Byron, Countess of Lovelace) war eine britische Mathematikerin. Sie war …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Ada King — Ada Lovelace Ada Lovelace (auch Ada Augusta Byron, Ada King oder Countess of Lovelace) (* 10. Dezember 1815 in London; † 27. November 1852 ebenda; eigentlich Augusta Ada King Byron, Countess of Lovelace) war eine britische Mathematikerin. Sie war …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Ada Lovelace — Ada Lovelace, auch Ada Augusta Byron oder Ada King, eigentlich Augusta Ada King Byron, Countess of Lovelace (* 10. Dezember 1815 in London; † 27. November 1852 in London) war eine britische Mathematikerin. Sie war die Tochter Lord Byrons und… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Ada Byron's notes on the analytical engine — are a description and associated documents produced by Augusta Ada King, Countess of Lovelace, (born Ada Byron) on Charles Babbage s design for a mechanical computer called the analytical engine. It was never built, but Ada s notes are widely… …   Wikipedia

  • Ada Lovelace — Infobox Scientist name = Ada Lovelace image size =200px birth date = December 10, 1815 birth place = London death date = November 27, 1852 death place = Marylebone nationality = England field = mathematics influenced =Augusta Ada King, Countess… …   Wikipedia

  • Byron — n. family name; male first name; Lord George Gordon Byron (1788 1824), English lord and poet; Augusta Ada Byron (1815 1852), Countess of Lovelace, daughter of poet Lord Byron, mathematician who collaborated with Charles Babbage to create the… …   English contemporary dictionary

  • Lovelace, Ada, Countess of — See: Byron, Ada Augusta …   Biographical history of technology

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