Teenage prodigies

May 15, 2008

You report that Alia Sabut is to become the youngest-ever university professor, at 19 years of age (Overseas briefing, 8 May). Colin MacLaurin (1693-1754), a mathematician and philosopher, was appointed at the same age to Marischal College and University of Aberdeen, which merged with King's College in 1860 to become simply the University of Aberdeen. Which has priority must be a matter of months or days and the definition of "appointment".

John Radford, University of East London.

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