The boy who knew too much: a child prodigy

This is the true story of scientific child prodigy, and former baby genius, Ainan Celeste Cawley, written by his father. It is the true story, too, of his gifted brothers and of all the Cawley family. I write also of child prodigy and genius in general: what it is, and how it is so often neglected in the modern world. As a society, we so often fail those we should most hope to see succeed: our gifted children and the gifted adults they become. Site Copyright: Valentine Cawley, 2006 +

Monday, November 20, 2006

The history of science: Ainan's fascination.

Ainan Celeste Cawley has a love of the history of Science. He is interested not only in what the science is, but the who and how of its origin. For Ainan, his heroes are not rock stars, or film stars, not writers or actors, not models or glitterati - not for him, the lure of celebrity culture. For him, "heroes" are scientists and discoverers, inventors and thinkers. He tells tales of their lives with a mixture of fascination and a sense of the absurdity of what they did to achieve their goals. As he has observed, many times, many of them died in the pursuit of science or were seriously injured. I don't think he is too impressed with the wisdom of this. Nevertheless, he finds their lives (and sometimes ridiculous deaths) interesting. Science can be a dangerous business: all you have to do is to look at the history of science, to realize this.

Take one example Ainan gave me yesterday.

There was a scientist called Richard Perkey (spelling of the surname cannot be confirmed) who lived rather long ago. Ainan gave me the dates - but I haven't been able to find this man on a brief internet search, so perhaps the spelling of his name is wrong - so I won't write the dates without this confirmation. Let us just say it is long ago.

Anyway, our man Richard was tinkering in his laboratory with Uranyl Nitrate (yes, from Uranium) and Hydrogen Peroxide. This is not a wise thing to do as he soon proved. There was a brief explosion, upon mixing, which was unfortunate for poor Richard Perkey, who broke his neck. He was paralysed. His neighbour heard the commotion and came and found Perkey unable to move and duly took the new born chemical away: Uranyl Hydroxide. That is the story of how Uranyl Hydroxide was discovered - but unfortunately the discoverer was in no position to enjoy the fruits of his work.

Such unfortunate tales of discovery are many in the history of science, and Ainan appears to have found them all, so full of these snapshots of past endeavour is he. Interesting though such mishaps must be to a child of six, aghast at the foolishness of adults, I don't believe Ainan would ever intentionally attempt anything so foolhardy: he would prepare for all eventualities first.

If you would like to learn more about Ainan Celeste Cawley, a scientific child prodigy, aged six, then please go to:

I also write of child prodigy, child genius, adult genius, savant, the creatively gifted, and gifted children in general.

Labels: , ,

AddThis Social Bookmark Button
posted by Valentine Cawley @ 12:25 PM 


Post a Comment

<< Home

Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape