Stephen Hawking

The life of a man who truly loved science

9 January 1942

Stephen Hawking is Born

Stephen Hawking was born in Oxford, England. His birth was exactly 300 years after the death of Galileo.

2 April 1958

Years at St. Albans School

Stephen Hawking attended St. Albans School in North London from 1953 to 1958. It was while he was at this school that he developed a passion for mathematics. This was a challenge in his household though because his father wanted him to study medicine.

2 October 1959

Hawking Attends Oxford University

At a very young age, Hawking began his studies at Oxford University. His focus was on physics. The brilliant young man found his studies at the university to be quite easy even though he spends only a little amount of his time studying. In his final year of study at the university, Hawking became very clumsy.

1 June 1962

Hawking Receives First-Class Honors Degree

The end of his sojourn at Oxford University was evidence of young Hawking’s brilliance. He left Oxford with a first-class honors degree. This is no small feat. After graduating from the prestigious university, Hawking began graduate work at Trinity Hall at Cambridge. 

2 January 1963

Hawking is Diagnosed with ALS

Just before Hawking became 21 years old, he was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). This is a very rare disease that affects movement and speech. Hawking was told by medical professionals that he would only love for two more years.

2 January 1965

Hawking Writes His Thesis

Hawking wrote his thesis based on an application of Roger Penrose’s theory of space-time singularity.

15 July 1965

Hawking Gets Married

Stephen got married to Jane who he had met at a party in 1963. The two stayed connected after meeting at the event. The two would later have two children together, Lucy and Timothy.

2 January 1966

Hawking Awarded

Hawking was awarded a fellowship at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge after completing his doctoral studies.

2 January 1966

Hawking Receives Adams Prize

‘Singularities and the Geometry of Space-Time’, an essay by Stephen Hawking, received much admiration and sparked much interest. The essay won Stephen Hawking the Adams Prize.

2 January 1968

Hawking Becomes a Member of Institute of Astronomy

Hawking became a member of the Institute of Astronomy at Cambridge in 1968.

2 January 1969

Hawking’s Health Gets Worse

In 1969, Hawking’s health started to diminish. He now needed the help of crutches. He was eventually forced to move around with the help of a wheelchair.

2 January 1970

The Second Law of Black Hole Dynamics

In 1970, Stephen Hawking discovered The Second Law of Black Hole Dynamics. He was able to unravel this phenomenon with the help of quantum theory and general relativity. With the application of these two theories, Hawking discovered that black holes could emit radiation.

2 January 1973

Hawking Releases His First Novel

Stephen Hawking released ‘The Large Structure of Space-Time. The book was extremely technical. This work was Hawking’s first published book.

2 January 1975

Hawking Received a Gold Medal

In 1975, Stephen Hawking received the Pius XI Gold Medal for Science. This medal was bestowed on the science enthusiast by Pope Paul VI.

2 January 1977

Hawking Becomes a Professor

Stephen Hawking was appointed as a professor at Cambridge in 1977. He served as professor of Gravitational Physics at the noble institution.

2 January 1978

Hawking Receives Honorary Doctorate

Stephen Hawking’s alma mater, The University of Oxford, awarded the profess an honorary doctorate because of the great work he had been doing in science.

2 January 1979

Hawking Awarded a Renowned Teaching Post

When Hawking returned to Cambridge, he was awarded one of the teaching world’s most renowned posts. This post was titled Lucasian Professor of Mathematics. Since 1663, this post had only been held by 14 people. The decorated list of individuals who have been awarded the post of Lucasian Professor of Mathematics is Sir Isaac Newton.

2 January 1982

The Queen Awards Hawking

In 1982, the Queen of the United Kingdom, Queen Elizabeth II, awarded Hawking a CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire).

2 January 1985

Hawking Loses his Voice

On a trip to Geneva, Stephen Hawking contracted pneumonia. After sitting through a tracheotomy, Hawking ended up losing his voice. The science expert’s speech had become very slurred prior to the surgical procedure he had to do because of the pneumonia. After losing his voice, a computer programmer developed a speech synthesizing program that would later serve as Hawking’s communication tool. 

2 January 1988

Hawking Releases ‘A Brief History of Time’

‘A Brief History of Time’ was Stephen Hawking’s most popular book. He had been working on the book since 1982. The book received massive support. It sold over 10 million copies and was translated into 40 languages. The book made it to the top of the bestseller lists in both the United States and the United Kingdom.

22 August 1992

Steven Spielberg Produces ‘A Brief History of Time’

Steven Spielberg filmed and published a documentary about Stephen Hawking’s life. The project was titled ‘A Brief History of Time’. The prolific scientist was also featured in an episode of ‘Star Track: The Next Generation’ as himself.

2 January 1995

Hawking Gets Divorced

After their separation in 1990, Hawking and Jane officially got divorced in 1990. Shortly after this official split, Stephen Hawking got married to Elaine Mason. Elaine Mason was a nurse who Stephen had fallen in love with.

2 November 2001

Hawking Publishes ‘The Universe in a Nutshell’

Hawking released ‘The Universe in a Nutshell’ in November 2001. The book won the scientist the Aventis Prizes for Science Books.

2 January 2004

Hawking Solved the Black Hole Paradox

Stephen Hawking announced that he had solved the Black Hole paradox in 2004. He presented his findings at the international conference on general relativity and gravitation. The event was held in Dublin.

2 January 2006

Hawking and Elain Gets Divorced

Stephen Hawking and Elain got divorced in 2006. After the divorce, Hawking became a lot closer to his children.

2 July 2009

Hawking Receives the US Medal of Freedom

In July 2009, Stephen Hawking received the Presidential Medal of Freedom. The medal was bestowed on him by President Barack Obama. This is the highest civilian honor in America.

2 November 2014

The Release of ‘The Theory of Everything’

This was a film about the life of Stephen Hawking and his ex-wife Jane Wilde. Eddie Redmayne played the role of Stephen Hawking.

15 March 2018

Stephen Hawking Dies

On March 14, 2018, the highly respected and decorated scientist, Stephen Hawking died. His family shared that he died peacefully.

4 October 2020

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