What is the longest discrepancy between death and publication?


3 Answers 3


The paper

Radcliffe, J. M. "Some properties of coherent spin states." Journal of Physics A: General Physics 4.3 (1971): 313

was submitted in 1970, published in 1971, and contains the following:

enter image description here

At the time of writing this post, the paper has 951 Google citations.

There is no hint as to the date of the passing of Prof. Radcliffe but it is the only publication by this author on MathSciNet; it is entirely possible that Prof. Radcliffe could have published in Journals not covered by MathSciNet. The Mathematical Genealogy project contains references to a single John Radcliffe who graduated from University of London in 1967, but the general area of the thesis and the aforementioned work do not match very well.

Anyways, this is clearly an example of posthumous publication not done in collaboration.

  • 1
    Why does your second paragraph say "D" Radcliffe? Commented Oct 28, 2019 at 23:49
  • @AzorAhai actually that what the note added in proof states, probably an error on their part. I reproduced a screen shot of the note as is in the paper. Commented Oct 29, 2019 at 0:09

Yes, papers get published posthumously.

I don't know who the world record holders are, but Klaus Schulten, one of the greats of biomolecular simulation, who passed away in October 2016, has written several papers in 2019 (according to Google Scholar). These include a PNAS: https://www.pnas.org/content/116/12/5356.short

  • 5
    Easier with joint publications that take a while to come to completion, I guess.
    – Buffy
    Commented Oct 28, 2019 at 21:07

Euler has several items published/presented in 1862. This is 79 years after his death on 18 September 1783. (Several were written in the 1740s, so the writing-publishing gap is more than a century.)

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .