In the previous story (#9) we mentioned Ramanujan having the luck of being spotted by Prof G.H. Hardy as the treasure of mathematics, another Chinese Hua Luogeng 华罗庚, 20 years younger than Ramanujan, was also coached by Prof Hardy, although Prof Hardy did not realize Hua’s potential later to the modern mathematics in China.

Hua dropped out of secondary school due to poverty, he worked in his father’s little grocery shop as the shop assistant. His talent was spotted by the French-educated mathematician Prof Xiong Qinlai ( 熊庆来) in Tsinghua University 清华大学 from a paper the young boy published – on Quantic Equation Solvability error made by a Math Professor Su. Hua was admitted to Tsinghua University as assistant math lecturer on exception. Later he was sent to Cambridge on 庚子赔款 Boxer Indemnity scholarship.

When Prof Hardy met Hua, he let Hua choose between:

1) Work on a PhD…

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