Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The Sherborne Formula - the making of Alan #Turing

The current edition of the Sherborne School magazine Vivat! features an excellent 12 page article about Alan Turing's experience at Sherborne written by the school's archivist Rachel Hassal. The article covers Turing's complete time at the Dorset public school (note that in England "public" schools are exclusive private schools) to when he left for Kings College Cambridge.
   It includes many details of his time there and in particular describes the influence a physics teacher, Henry Gervis, and a mathematics teacher, Ben Davis, had on him. Interestingly Ben Davis was the only teacher then at Sherborne who had a PhD. The article features many photos of Turing I've not seen before and gives an excellent account of his school days. You can download a pdf scan (14Mb) of the article from The Universal Machine's website:
Turing (front row far left), aged 13, at Westcott House Sherborne, 1926