The Infinite in the Finite

Wilson, Alistair Macintosh
The Infinite in the Finite

Oxford University Press, (1995).

Some pages from the book:

Title Page

Publication details


The book is about the development of early mathematics based in its historical context. A review can be seen on the website of the Mathematical Association of America here.

Alistair Mackintosh Wilson attended ABGS from 1955 to 1960. He was the son of Dr A.T.M. Wilson, and grandson of Dr. J.M. Wilson. Both father and grandfather were well-known general practitioners in Aberdare, with J.M. Wilson setting up practice early in the twentieth century.

Alistair, the author of this book, went to London University, got a first class degree in Astrophysics and then went on to do a doctorate in Cambridge. He was then recruited by NASA and went to work in Houston. After several years there he came back to UK and lived in Cambridge. Finally he moved to Perth, Australia where he and his American wife now live.

Alistair is present in the 1957 panoramic photograph in which all boys are numbered. He is No. 235.

Five years after placing Alistair’s book in the ‘library’, sad news came of his death. The following notice appeared in the local press: “Alistair Macintosh Wilson: Astrophysicist and champion weight-lifter, died aged 77 at Perth, Western Australia on October 8th, 2019. Beloved husband of Lynette, much loved son the late Alistair and Olive Wilson, devoted brother to the late Hugh, mourned by his sister Ann.”