Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click on 'Find out more' to see our Cookie statement.

Oxford University is today remembering one of its most celebrated former students, Professor Stephen Hawking, who has died aged 76.

The world-renowned theoretical physicist completed his undergraduate degree at University College, Oxford between 1959 and 1962, obtaining first-class honours.

He became regarded as one of the world's most brilliant scientists, forging a hugely successful academic career at the University of Cambridge while seeking to communicate his ideas to a wider audience through books, lectures and television appearances. He achieved this after being diagnosed with motor neurone disease at the age of 21.

Writing in The Guardian, Professor Hawking's long-time collaborator and friend Sir Roger Penrose, of Oxford's Mathematical Institute, said: 'He was extremely highly regarded, in view of his many greatly impressive, sometimes revolutionary, contributions to the understanding of the physics and the geometry of the universe.'

Together, Professor Hawking and Sir Roger famously showed that Einstein's General Theory of Relativity implied space and time would have a beginning in the Big Bang and an end in black holes.

Last year, Professor Hawking returned to Oxford to give the inaugural address for the Oxford Mathematical Institute's Roger Penrose public lecture series, on the subject of black holes. Sir Roger described it as a 'huge pleasure and great honour' to be able to welcome Professor Hawking to Oxford to give the lecture.

Story courtesy of the University of Oxford News Office

Similar stories

Eight Oxford researchers win top UKRI Future Leaders Fellowships

Five of the new Fellows are from MPLS Division. The Fellowships have been created by UKRI to help develop the next wave of world-class research and innovation leaders in academia and business.

Oxford climate scientists: No doubt about climate change

Leading Oxford climate scientists today insisted there can be no doubt that human-driven climate change is a fact and urgent action is needed, as the IPCC’s report is released showing emissions are driving up temperatures.

Beautiful clouds, Mr Bond: Philip Stier and why you shouldn't look up the same way again

A Science Blog interview with Philip Stier, now at the forefront of climate science as a leading researcher into clouds.

Binks Trust gift to boost photovoltaic research

The Department of Physics is delighted to have received a significant philanthropic donation from the Binks Trust, which will be used to enhance its solar energy research over the next few years.

Global Jet Watch: discovery of jets in classical novae

Scientists at the University of Oxford have discovered that classical nova explosions are accompanied by the ejection of jets of oppositely-directed hot gas and plasma, and that this persists for years following the nova eruption. Previously, such jets had only been encountered emanating from very different systems such as black holes or newly collapsing stars.

Green light for European Space Agency mission to Venus

Oxford University scientists will play a leading role in a new mission to study the geology and atmosphere of Venus, our neighbouring planet, helping determine whether it was once habitable – and why Earth became the only known planet that can sustain life.