The Warwick Mathematics Society Website

We are sponsored by

User login

Upcoming events

  • No upcoming events available

There are 567 members of the Warwick Mathematics Society, of which 4 are new today!
We're 113% of the way toward our target of 500 members.
You can join up on the Warwick SU website.

Who's new

  • Samjfreeman
  • Jake Cooper
  • Adam Golab
  • JasonPaterson
  • MattTurner

Fun Stuff


We have regular social events; the big ones being the Integrating Factor in term 1, and the Maths BBQ/ puzzle trail in term 3, as well as smaller socials such as pub golf throughout the year. We will inform you of these via our Facebook groups and through emails.

Lecturer Quotes

Over the years the lecturers here at Warwick have delivered one great lecture after another, sometimes they even find the time to say something funny. WMS presents to you some of the best quotes from our favourite lecturers.

At the bottom of the page you'll find more fun stuff!
Or view this page in alphabetical order.

Got a funny quote? Go to the contact page and let us know!

  • Jeremy Gray

    • "You need your head in the right place to do this - probably tucked under one arm." - 2003
    • "Think of this example as a sort of melon with a plate balanced on top...[on stereographic projection]" - 2003
    • "I dare say if you turn up on the intercity expressway with a uni-cycle they won't let it on, and the rules say no bicycles on the expressway. "And that sir is a bicycle." "But it's only got one wheel."" - 2005
  • Colin Rourke

    • "Oh *$@! three M's" - 1993
    • "Student: "what's that word there?" Colin Rourke: "what?...ah that's 'thru' it means through...I'll write it out in full" [writes 'trough']" - 1993
    • "Sorry, I have deliberately made that complicated by using words you understand" - 1994
    • "I'm no good with numbers. [said in his first lecture to first year undergraduates]" - 1994
    • "Size doesn't matter" - 1994
    • "An example of a geometry that is not Euclidean is non-Euclidean geometry" - 1994
    • "This is very easy to draw, if you're not drunk" - 1994
    • "It almost looks right" - 1994
    • "I'm bound to make a mistake" - 1994
    • "It should come out" - 1994
    • "You forget which finger is which" - 1994
    • "[In the middle of a proof] HELP!" - 1994
    • "Let's try and devise a notation that means something" - 1994
    • "I don't like square roots" - 1994
    • " I can't go wrong" - 1994
    • "It's gone wrong" - 1994
    • "There's a bit of fiddling around here" - 1994
    • "Your imagination is better than my drawing" - 1994
    • "It amazes me how the lights flash when you turn the motors on and off" - 1994
    • "Hyperbolic flower beds tend to go outside the garden" - 1994
    • "It's very interesting what curves you can get when you let things slide around on stuff" - 1994
    • "I had to distort it in order to make it plausible" - 1994
    • "Those are straight lines, I've just drawn them curvy" - 1994
    • "I did it right, but I got it very bad" - 1994
    • "Let's draw it over here because it's much more suggestive" - 1994
    • "This is non-examinable in the sense that I won't set any questions on it" - 1994
    • "Infinity is down here somewhere [pointing to the bottom of the blackboard]" - 1994
    • "A horrible piece of algebra ... that is just a few lines long" - 1994
    • "Once you've got the equation of the tangent, you can see it's a tangent" - 1994
    • "It's sort of clear,if you do it right" - 1994
    • "Think of sets as being like a door. They are either open or closed. Oh no, wait. A door can be ajar." - 2000
    • "All proofs are by contradiction... [shortly followed by:] Wait, that's not true. It's amazing the stupid things you say when you're stood up here." - 2004
    • "All of you look confused... am I speaking Chinese? [Then after realising that the entire first four rows consisted of people from China:] Oh wait, thats a silly thing to say in a roomful of Chinese people. Am I speaking Russian? Gosh I hope there are no Russians in here!" - 2005
    • "[When nobody offered an answer to one of his questions, he shouted] You are all so thick!" - 2005
    • "They should ban nine o'clock lectures, though of course then they would have to ban ten o'clock lectures by induction." - 2005
    • "This proof is morally the same as one you have already seen." - 2005
    • "It's supposed to look like a curly T, but it looks more like a bow tie with a silly leg on it." - 2005
    • "And I'm going to use green chalk for this, can you see green at the back? [No answer]. Well I'd better not use green; if I use green you can't even hear me!" - 2005
    • "I'm running on automatic, and automatic has just gone wrong." - 2005
    • "My shoelaces just won't stay done up today...Maybe the chalk lubricates them, they always seem to come undone when I'm lecturing." - 2005
    • "Since we can't decide on a statement, let's go for a proof [of the statement that hasn't been decided on]." - 2005
    • "I'm going to push the proof of that one under the carpet." - 2005
    • "Why does the red chalk always go missing first? It must be red shift." - 2009
  • John Moody

    • "As an example of Kaczinsky's mistakes, he felt it was somehow acceptable to make a bomb using gunpowder, but it must be in a wooden box." - April 4th, 1996
    • "So a martian comes down to earth and asks you 'what is this map?'. You try to explain in terms of some space and he says 'what is this space? I only have tentacles'." - 2005
    • "17, I've never seen that number before. It must be a very important number." - 2009
    • "I really get descent." - 2009
    • "What is this descent condition? I don't get it at all." - 2009
    • "He will win the next fields medal." - 2009
    • "I cheated. I cheated and you believed me. You believed me." - 2009
  • Vadim Lozin

    • "That is a very good answer, except for the problem that it is wrong." - 2008
    • "Nobody needs an explanation of this... does anyone need an explanation of this?" - 2008
  • David Elworthy

    • "[talking about trying to prove a theorem]Here you might give up... or decide this is sport and try again. " - 2005
    • "If not, try again and get a good feel tomorrow." - 2005
    • "It's immediate when you think about it for a little bit." - 2005
    • "I can put whatever symbols I want on the board as long as I stick to the laws of decency." - 2005
    • "We've differentiated twice now so we're unstoppable." - 2005
    • "We can apply this theorem [points] ... which I've rubbed off." - 2005
    • "This function is going up and down like the clappers." - 2005
    • "Damn, I got it wrong. Monkey nuts." - 2005
    • "OK, you can go now and à dream happily." - 2005
    • "This is a really interesting question, the perfect sort for discussing with friends over a glass of water or something." - 2005
    • "Did I just write a lambda? I meant r. Arr. Arrrrrrr. [Circles it a few times, and draws an arrow saying "arr".] No, wait, I spelt it wrong. [Adds gh to the end so it becomes "arrgh".]" - 2005
    • "Now, all this happens because of that proof up there [points to something he wrote high up on the board that he can reach] I'll see if I can get it [he throws a piece of chalk up at it, which doesn't leave any mark, and falls back down before people can see what he is talking about]." - 2005
    • "Now it's time to use L'Hopital's Rule; so let's wheel out the old geezer!" - 2005
    • "This is a lovely theorem." - 2006
    • "I've put we "know" in quotations because we dont." - 2006
    • "You don't have to call a function sally if you don't want to, you could call it Cuthbert or anything you like really as long as you stick to the laws of decency and...errr, you don't even have to do that. [Demonstrating that a confusing looking function was just notation by calling it Sally instead.]" - 2006
    • "[After hearing giggles at the mention of a Lipschitz function:] Well, I suppose Lipschitz was some... one of these... people." - 2006
    • "Not one of these 8's upside down; that's not existing, that's just being in a sort of sublime state. [on infinity]" - 2006

Other Bits

A selection of links to other fun bits: