Henry Ellis Daniels
Born(1912-10-02)2 October 1912
London, UK
Died16 April 2000(2000-04-16) (aged 87)
Known forThe Parry-Daniels map
Saddle point approximation
SpouseBarbara Pickering (m. 1950)
Academic background
Alma materUniversity of Edinburgh
University of Cambridge
Doctoral advisorAlexander Aitken
Academic work
InstitutionsWool Industries Research Association
University of Cambridge
University of Birmingham
Doctoral studentsDavid Cox
James Durbin
Anil Kumar Gain
Wally Smith

Henry Ellis Daniels FRS[1] (2 October 1912 – 16 April 2000)[2][3] was a British statistician. He was President of the Royal Statistical Society (1974–1975), and was awarded its Guy Medal in Gold in 1984, following a silver medal in 1947. He became a Fellow of the Royal Society of London in 1980. The Parry-Daniels map is named after him (together with the English mathematician Bill Parry).[3][4]

Education and career

Daniels was born in London and was educated at George Heriot's School.[5] He subsequently graduated from the University of Edinburgh (M.A. Hons. 1933[citation needed], PhD 1943)[6] and went on to further study at Clare College, Cambridge (B.A. 1935).[7] In 1957, he became the first Professor of Mathematical Statistics at the University of Birmingham.[2] He stayed at the university till his retirement in 1978. After retirement, he went to Cambridge and lived there until his death.[8] He died at Royal Shrewsbury Hospital, having suffered a "massive stroke" at breakfast time the previous day.[1] His funeral was officiated, at his request, by a humanist.[1]

The watchmaker George Daniels (no relation) enlisted Daniels' help with the equations required for the design of his Space Traveller's Watch.[2]

Personal life

Daniels' family was Jewish, of Russian (partly Polish and partly Lithuanian) origin.[5] In 1950, Daniels married Barbara Pickering; together, they had two children.[1]

In 2000, while on travel during a workshop held at Gregynog Hall, Daniels suffered a massive stroke and died at the nearby Royal Shrewsbury Hospital.[1]

Selected publications by Daniels


  1. ^ a b c d e Cox, D. (2003). "Henry Ellis Daniels. 2 October 1912 – 16 April 2000". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 49: 133–146. doi:10.1098/rsbm.2003.0008. S2CID 68973246.
  2. ^ a b c "Obituaries: Henry Daniels, Edwin J. Redfern". Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, Series D. 50 (2): 213–215. 2001. doi:10.1111/1467-9884.00273.
  3. ^ a b Whittle, P. (1993). "A Conversation with Henry Daniels". Statistical Science. 8 (3): 342–353. doi:10.1214/ss/1177010911.
  4. ^ Henry Daniels at the Mathematics Genealogy Project
  5. ^ a b "The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. 2004. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/74126. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  6. ^ Daniels, H. E. (1943). On the strength distribution of bundles of threads, and its asymptotic approximation (PDF) (Thesis).
  7. ^ "DANIELS, Prof. Henry Ellis". Who's Who & Who Was Who. Vol. 2018 (online ed.). A & C Black. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  8. ^ Whittle, Peter (4 May 2000). "Obituary: Henry Daniels". The Guardian. Retrieved 24 September 2013.