Alfred Bray Kempe

In July 1879, Alfred Bray Kempe found the proof for the four color conjecture, he submitted the theorem to the American Journal of Mathematics. Soon after, it was published at the end of that year.

In Kempe’s method, he used an argument known as Kempe Chains. If every region on a map is colored but one, then that point left over becomes X. In the end, if X is surrounded by all four colors, then there is a color left for X to become.  

A year later, Percy John Heawood was able to prove Kempe wrong by publishing a paper on map coloring theorems. This proved that every map would be five-colored.

Thinking of all the history involved in Coloring theorems is crazy, years ago they started looking into this and everyone rejected peoples solutions, and then came a computer.


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