The richness of the theory of functions over the complex field makes it natural to look for a similar theory for the only other non-trivial real associative division algebra, namely the quaternions. Such a theory exists and is quite far-reaching, yet it seems to be little known. It was not developed until nearly a century after Hamilton's discovery of quaternions. Hamilton himself (1) and his principal followers and expositors, Tait(2) and Joly(3), only developed the theory of functions of a quaternion variable as far as it could be taken by the general methods of the theory of functions of several real variables (the basic ideas of which appeared in their modern form for the first time in Hamilton's work on quaternions). They did not delimit a special class of regular functions among quaternion-valued functions of a quaternion variable, analogous to the regular functions of a complex variable.
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