By Jeannine Alton, Harriot Weiskittel and Julia Latham-Jackson

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

As will be clear from the foregoing, the essential debt is owed to G.K. Batchelor. The assembling, ordering and identification of many of the items in the collection are primarily due to his expert knowledge, and his personal affection for Taylor.

Geoffrey Ingram Taylor was born on 7 March 1886, the son of Edward Ingram Taylor and his wife Margaret, who was the daughter of the mathematician George Boole. He was admitted to Trinity College Cambridge in 1905 where he read first Mathematics and then Natural Sciences and was awarded first a Scholarship and then a Fellowship which he held from 1910 to his death, with a short gap during the First World War when he joined many other Trinity scientists at the RAF factory at Farnborough where he worked on problems in aerodynamics.

Published

These surviving records are variable - even capricious - in content and time-span, for reasons inherent in Taylor's temperament, interests and methods of work. For most of his career he held research posts, especially the Yarrow Research Professorship of the Royal Society, to which he was appointed in 1923; he was thus almost wholly absolved from routine teaching, administrative, departmental or institutional tasks, and free to pursue whatever research suggested itself, or was suggested to him. He had the help of his technician, Walter Thompson, and a room in the Cavendish Laboratory, originally made available by Rutherford, who described Taylor as being 'paid provided he does no work'. This lack of formal establishment obligations, though ideal for Taylor's research, meant that he had no office or secretarial help. He worked with rough notes and drawings, often on any piece of paper that came to hand; even when he used a notebook of more conventional kind, the content is somewhat heterogeneous and lacks dates or headings (see B.2, B.3, for examples). Several of the official committee reports in Section C originally took the form of personal letters which were then typed out in a more acceptable official style (see, for example, C.37, C.41, C.42, C.45, C.49, C.50). Conversely, several letters in Section D are statements of research in progress, and were typed up and used as such by the recipients. Furthermore, it should be remembered that Taylor did much work at home at `Farmfield', whence most of the surviving letters are addressed.

The general consequences of these conditions of work are often mentioned in biographical articles about Taylor, and are best summarised by Batchelor in his Memoir (Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society, 22, 1976), p.597

Perhaps I should explain here that, so far as I know, at no time in his life did Taylor employ a secretary or have his letters typed. The documentary evidence of what he did throughout his life consists wholly of incoming letters and papers (including, of course, his own in published form), and since his filing system was rudimentary, and dependent more on his wife's wish to contain the papers in one room than on his need to find something later, I am sure there are some gaps. He did make an effort to retain one copy of every published paper in a set of boxes, but typed or duplicated reports, by him or by someone else, often remained in the envelopes in which they were delivered, and incoming letters were collected in large brown envelopes marked only with the year. Periodically Stephanie had a clearing-up operation which led to some documents being thrown out in order to make room for new ones, and few of the letters and documents that come in before about 1960 have survived.

The result is that very little now survives by way of notebooks, experimental records or laboratory observations to document Taylor's scientific research (see Section B). In order to supplement these scanty resources, Batchelor assembled from some of Taylor's correspondents copies of letters which might permit the reconstruction of a collaborative piece of research, joint publication or substantial scientific discussion. Successful examples of this enterprise are enumerated in the introduction to Section D and itemised in the relevant entries. Because of the paucity of surviving material by Taylor himself, a list of all items in that Section which include his letters or draft replies to correspondents is also given in the introduction to Section D. In addition, Batchelor assembled many of the reports and committee papers by Taylor, and these, together with other drafts and papers found in the collection, constitute the considerable body of unpublished work brought together in Section C.

A word may be said here about Taylor's handwriting. Although he wrote a fairly standard legible hand until about 1913 (see the manuscript of the Adams Prize Essay in C.2), the `Scotia' notebook of the same year (see B.1) is in the characteristic script, resembling the waves and eddies it often describes, of most of his subsequent letters and papers. It has certain similarities with his mother's hand, especially in her later years, and is not easy to read. Most of the recipients of his letters had typed copies made.

The personal material in Section A includes documents relating to a little known episode in 1911 when Taylor was obliged to spend several months in a sanatorium with a lung infection (see A.17 - A.23), and a considerable amount of information relating to Taylor's family, and particularly to the Boole connection. Taylor's mother, Margaret, was the second of the five daughters of George Boole, and Taylor both inherited and contributed to a sense of family continuity (see especially A.79 - A.135 and introductory note). The numerous photographs in E.1 - E.15 are a useful additional record of Taylor's family, career, travels and interests.

The material was received from Professor G.K. Batchelor, Taylor's scientific executor. It had been assembled over a period of time from various sites in `Farmfield', Taylor's home in Cambridge, and from colleagues and friends; it represents all that remains of Taylor's personal and professional papers.

Legal Status Private

The main reference throughout is to the Memoir written by Batchelor (Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society, 22, 1976, pp.565-633) and is given in the form: Batchelor, Memoir, p...

References to The scientific papers of Sir Geoffrey Taylor, ed. G.K. Batchelor, IV vol., C.U.P. are given in the form (SP....).

LIST OF PUBLICATIONS

Almost all Taylor's scientific papers, published and unpublished, have been reprinted in four volumes with the title The scientific papers of Sir Geoffrey Ingram Taylor, published by Cambridge University Press. The designation SP IV, 1 in the list below indicates that a paper has been reprinted in volume IV and is paper no. 1 within that volume.

1909 Interference fringes with feeble light. Proc. Camb. phil. Soc. 15, 114-115 (SP IV, 1)

1910 The conditions necessary for discontinuous motion in gases. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 84, 371-377. (SP III, 1)

1914 Report on the work carried out by the s.s. Scotia, 1913, pp. 48-68. London: H.M.S.O.

1915a Eddy motion in the atmosphere. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. A 215, 1-26. (SP II, 1)

b The use of fin surface to stabilize a weight towed from an aeroplane. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 184. (SP III, 2)

c Report on the accuracy with which temperature errors in determining heights by barometer may be corrected. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 239.

1916a Skin friction of the wind on the earth's surface. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 92, 196-199. (SP II, 2)

b Conditions at the surface of a hot body exposed to the wind. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 272. (SP II, 3)

c On the dissipation of sound in the atmosphere. Paper for Advis. Comm. Aeronaut. (SP II, 4)

d (With C. J. P. CAVE) Variation of wind velocity close to the ground. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 296, part 1. (SP II, 5)

e Pressure distribution round a cylinder. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 191. (SP III, 3)

f Pressure distribution over the wing of an aeroplane in flight. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 287. (SP III, 4)

g Phenomena connected with turbulence in the lower atmosphere. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 304.

1917a (With A. A. GRIFFITH) The use of soap films in solving torsion problems. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 333, and Proc. Inst. mech. eng., pp. 755-789. (SP I, 1)

b (With A. A. GRIFFITH). The problem of flexure and its solution by the soap-film method. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 399. (SP I, 2)

c The formation of fog and mist. Q.Jl R. met. Soc. 43, 241-268. (SP II, 6)

1917d Observations and speculations on the nature of turbulent motion. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 345. (SP II, 7)

e Phenomena connected with turbulence in the lower atmosphere. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 94, 137-155. (SP II, 8)

f Motion of solids in fluids when the flow is not irrotational. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 93, 99-113. (SP IV, 2)

g Fog conditions. Aeronaut. J. 21, 75-90.

1918a (With A. A. GRIFFITH) The application of soap films to the determination of the torsion and flexure of hollow shafts. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 392. (SP I, 3)

b On the dissipation of eddies. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 598. (SP II, 9)

c Skin friction on a flat surface. Rep. Memo. advis. Comm. Aeronaut. no. 604. (SP II, 10)

1919a Tidal friction in the Irish Sea. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. A 220, 1-93. (SP II, 11)

b On the shapes of parachutes. Paper for Advis. Comm. Aeronaut. (SP III, 5)

1920a Tidal friction and the secular acceleration of the moon. Mon. Not. R. astr. Soc. 80, 308-309. (SP. II, 12)

b Navigation notes on a passage from Burnham-on-Crouch to Oban. Yachting Monthly.

1921a Tidal oscillations in gulfs and rectangular basins. Proc. Lond. math. Soc. 20, 148-181. (SP II, 13)

b Diffusion by continuous movements. Proc. Lond. math. Soc. 20, 196-212. (SP II, 14)

c Tides in the Bristol Channel. Proc. Camb. phil. Soc. 20, 320-325. (SP II, 15)

d Scientific methods in aeronautics. Aeronaut. J. 25, 474-491. (SP III, 6)

c The `rotational inflow factor' in propeller theory. Rep. Memo. Aeronaut. Res. Comm., no. 765. (SP III, 7)

f Experiments with rotating fluids. Proc. R. Soc. Land. A 100, 114-121. (SP IV, 3)

g Experiments with rotating fluids. Proc. Camb. phil. Soc. 20, 326-329.

1922a A relation between Bertrand's and Kelvin's theorems on impulses. Proc. Lond. math. Soc. 21, 413-414. (SP I, 4)

b Notes on Mr Glauert's paper, `An aerodynamic theory of the airscrew'. Paper for Aeronaut. Res. Comm. (SP III, 8)

c The motion of a sphere in a rotating liquid. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 102, 180-189. (SP IV, 4)

1923a (With C. F. ELAM) The distortion of an aluminium crystal during a tensile test. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A. 102, 643-667. (SP I, 5)

b The decay of eddies in a fluid. Paper for Aeronaut. Res. Comm. (SP II, 16)

c Stability of a viscous liquid contained between two rotating cylinders. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. A 223, 289-343. (SP IV, 5)

d. The motion of ellipsoidal particles in a viscous fluid. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 103, 58-61. (SP IV, 6)

e On the decay of vortices in a viscous fluid. Phil. Mag. 46, 671-674. (SP IV, 7)

f Experiments on the motion of solid bodies in rotating fluids. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 104, 213-218. (SP IV, 8)

1924a The singing of wires in a wind. Nature, Lond. 113, 536. (SP III, 9)

b Extracts from the log of Frolic. R. Cruising Club. J., pp. 85-105.

1925a (With W. S. FARREN) The heat developed during plastic extension of metals. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 107, 422-451. (SP I, 6)

b (With C. F. ELAM) The plastic extension and fracture of aluminium crystals. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 108, 28-51. (SP I, 7)

1925c Notes on the `Navier effect'. Paper for Aeronaut. Res. Comm. (SP I, 8)

d Note on the connection between the lift on an aerofoil in a wind and the circulation around it. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. A 225, 238-245. (SP III, 10)

e (With C. T. R. WILSON) The bursting of soap-bubbles in a uniform electric field. Proc. Camb. phil. Soc. 22, 728-730. (SP IV, 9)

f Experiments with rotating fluids. Proc. 1st Int. Congr. Appl. Mech., Delft, 1924, pp. 89-96.

g Versuche mit rotierenden Flüssigkeiten. Z. angew. Math. Mech. 5, 250-253.

1926a (With W. S. FARREN) The distortion of crystals of aluminium under compression. I. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 111, 529-551. (SP I, 9)

b (With C. F. ELAM) The distortion of iron crystals. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 112, 337-361. (SP I, 10)

1927a The distortion of single crystals of metals. Proc. 2nd Int. Congr. Appl. Mech., Zürich, 1926, pp. 46-52. (SP I, 11)

b The distortion of crystals of aluminium under compression. II. Distortion by double slipping and changes in orientation of crystal axes during compression. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 116, 16-38. (SP I, 12)

c The distortion of crystals of aluminium under compression. III. Measurements of stress. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 116, 39-60. (SP I, 13)

d An experiment on the stability of superposed steams of fluid. Proc. Camb. Phil. Soc. 23, 730-731. (SP II, 17)

e Turbulence. Q. Jl R. met. Soc. 53, 201-211.

f Across the Arctic circle in Frolic, 1927. R. Cruising Club J., pp. 9-26.

1928a The deformation of crystals of beta-brass. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 118, 1-24. (SP I, 14)

b Resistance to shear in metal crystals. Trans. Faraday Soc. 24, 121-125. (SP I, 15)

c A manometer for use with small Pitot tubes. Proc. Camb. phil. Soc. 24, 74-75. (SP III, 11)

d The energy of a body moving in an infinite fluid, with an application to airships. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 120, 13-21. (SP III, 12)

e The forces on a body placed in a curved or converging stream of fluid. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 120, 260-283. (SP III, 13)

f (With C. F. SHARMAN) A mechanical method for solving problems of flow in compressible fluids. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 121, 194-217. (SP III, 14)

g The force acting on a body placed in a curved and converging stream of fluid. Rep. Memo. aeronaut. Res. Comm. no. 1166.

h Report on progress during 1927-8 in calculation of flow of compressible fluids and suggestions for further work. Rep. Memo. aeronaut Res. Comm. no. 1196.

1929a The criterion for turbulence in curved pipes. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 124, 243-249. (SP II, 18)

b Waves and tides in the atmosphere. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 126, 169-183. (SP II, 19)

c The air wave from the great explosion at Krakatau. 4th Pacific Science Congr., Java, 1929, vol. II B, 645-655.

1930a The application of Osborne Reynold's theory of heat transfer to flow through a pipe. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 129, 25-30. (SP II, 20)

b The flow of air at high speeds past curved surfaces. Rep. Memo. aeronaut. Res. Comm. no. 1381. (SP III, 15)

1930c Some cases of flow of compressible fluids. Rep. Memo. aeronaut. Res. Comm. no. 1382. (SP III, 16)

d Recent work on the flow of compressible fluids. J. Lond. math. Soc. 5, 224-240. (SP III, 17)

e Tour in the East Indies. Proc. R. Instn 26, 209.

f Stroömung um einen Korper in einer kompressiblen Flüssigkeit. Z. angew. Math. Mech. 10, 334-345.

1931a (With H. QUINNEY) The plastic distortion of metals. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. A 230, 323-362. (SP I, 16)

b Effect of variation in density on the stability of superposed streams of fluid. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 132, 499-523. (SP II, 21)

c Internal waves and turbulence in a fluid of variable density. Rapp. P.-v. Réun. Cons. perm. int. Explor. Mer 76, 35-42. (SP II, 22)

d The flow round a body moving in a compressible fluid. Proc. 3rd Int. Congr. Appl. Mech., Stockholm, 1930, vol. I, 263-275.

e Round Ireland in Frolic. R. Cruising Club J., pp. 213-225.

1932a (With H. QUINNEY) The distortion of wires on passing through a draw-plate. J. Inst. Metals 49, 187-199. (SP I, 17)

b Note on the distribution of turbulent velocities in a fluid near a solid wall. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 135, 678-684. (SP II, 23)

c The transport of vorticity and heat through fluids in turbulent motion. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 135, 685-705. (SP II, 24)

d The resonance theory of semidiurnal atmospheric oscillations. Mem. R. met. Soc. 4, 43-51. (SP II, 25)

e Applications to aeronautics of Ackeret's theory of supersonic aerofoils moving at speeds greater than that of sound. Rep. Memo. aeronaut. Res. Comm. no. 1467. (SP III, 18)

f The viscosity of a fluid containing small drops of another fluid. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 138, 41-48. (SP IV, 10)

g Note on review by Davies and Sutton of the present position of the of the theory of turbulence. Q. Jl R. met. Soc. 58, 61-65.

1933a The buckling load for a rectangular plate with four clamped edges. Z. angew. Math. Mech. 13, 147-152. (SP I, 18)

b (With J. W. MACCOLL) The air pressure on a cone moving at high speeds. I. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 139, 278-297. (SP III, 19)

c (With J. W. MACCOLL) The air pressure on a cone moving at high speeds. II. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 139, 298-311. (SP III, 20)

d (With J. W. MACCOLL) L'onde ballistique d'un projectile à téte conique. Mém. de l' Art. Franç. 12, 651-683.

1934a (With H. QUINNEY) The latent energy remaining in a metal after cold working. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 143, 307-326. (SP I, 19)

b Faults in a material which yields to shear stress while retaining its volume elasticity. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 145, 1-18. (SP I, 20)

c The mechanism of plastic deformation of crystals. I. Theoretical. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 145, 362-387. (SP I, 21)

d The mechanism of plastic deformation of crystals. II. Comparison with observations. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 145, 388-404. (SP I, 22)

e The strength of rock salt. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 145, 405-415. (SP I, 23)

f A theory of the plasticity of crystals. Z. Kristall. A 89, 375-385. (SP I, 24)

g The formation of emulsions in definable fields of flow. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 146, 501-523. (SP IV, 11)

h The holding power of anchors. Yachting Monthly and Motor Boating Mag. (SP IV, 12)

1935a Lattice distortion and latent heat of cold work in copper. Paper for Aeronaut. Res. Comm. (SP I, 25)

b Turbulence in a contracting stream. Z. angew. Math. Mech. 15, 91-96. (SP II, 26)

c Statistical theory of turbulence. I. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 151, 421-444. (SP II, 27)

d Statistical theory of turbulence. II. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 151, 444-454. (SP II, 28)

e Statistical theory of turbulence. III. Distribution of dissipation of energy in a pipe over its cross-section. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 151, 455-464. (SP II, 29)

f Statistical theory of turbulence. IV. Diffusion in a turbulent air stream. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 151, 465-478. (SP II, 30)

g Distribution of velocity and temperature between concentric rotating cylinders. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 151, 494-512. (SP II, 31)

h (With J. W. MACCOLL) The mechanics of compressible fluid. Section H of Aerodynamic theory, vol. III (ed. W. F. Durand), pp. 209-250. Berlin: Springer.

1936a The mean value of the fluctuations in pressure and pressure gradient in a turbulent fluid. Proc. Camb. phil. Soc. 32, 380-384. (SP II, 32)

b Statistical theory of turbulence. V. Effect of turbulence on boundary layer. Theoretical discussion of relationship between scale of turbulence and critical resistance of spheres. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 156, 307-317. (SP II, 33)

c The oscillations of the atmosphere. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 156, 318-326. (SP II, 34)

d Correlation measurements in a turbulent flow through a pipe. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 157, 537-546. (SP II, 35)

e Fluid friction between rotating cylinders. I. Torque measurements. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 157, 546-564. (SP II, 36)

f Fluid friction between rotating cylinders. II. Distribution of velocity between concentric cylinders when outer one is rotating and inner one is at rest. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 157, 565-578. (SP II, 37)

g Well established problems in high speed flow. R. Accad. Ital. Att.: 5, Conv. Sci. Fis. Mat. Nat., pp. 198-214.

1937a (With H. QUINNEY) The emission of the latent energy due to previous cold working when a metal is heated. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 163, 157-181. (SP I, 26)

b (With A. E. GREEN) Mechanism of the production of small eddies from large ones. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 158, 499-521. (SP II, 38)

c Flow in pipes and between parallel planes. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 159, 496-506. (SP II, 39)

d The statistical theory of isotropic turbulence. J. aeronaut. Sci. 4, 311-315. (SP II, 40)

e The determination of drag by the Pitot transverse method. Rep. Memo. aeronaut. Res. Comm. no. 1808. (SP III, 21)

f The determination of stresses by means of soap films. Article in The mechanical properties of fluids, pp. 237-254. London: Blackie.