Archibald Read Richardson

Born: 21 August 1881 in London, England
Died: 4 November 1954 in Cape Town, South Africa

Archibald Richardson's father was John Richardson (born Endon, Kent about 1851) who was a bank manager. His mother was Elizabeth Richardson (born at Exning, Newmarket, Suffolk about 1851). Archibald Read Richardson had siblings Constance (born about 1885), Lionel (born 1888), Charles (born about 1890) and Sarah (born about 1890).

Archibald Richardson was a student at Imperial College, London. He was then appointed to a position in the College. He served with the British Expeditionary Force from 1914 to 1919. He fought at the Battle of Bullecourt in 1917. The small village of Bullecourt is to the south of Arras. The first battles in April 1917 were disastrously planned by the Allies and failed. The second attacks in May were, as the first, very costly in lives, but after two weeks of fighting Bullecourt was taken by the Allies. Richardson was awarded the D.S.O. for his bravery in the battle. He was seriously wounded in 1918 which left him an invalid for life.

He was appointed professor of mathematics at Swansea in 1920. He collaborated with D E Littlewood on invariants and the theory of group representations. They introduced the immanant of a matrix, studied Schur functions and developed the Littlewood-Richardson rule for their multiplication.

Richardson was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society on 21 March 1946.

Article by: J J O'Connor and E F Robertson

July 2007
MacTutor History of Mathematics