A young genius - in his pre-teen year. Any genius below 12 is eligible for the title of a Child Prodigy. Sometimes ignored or discriminated by those who consider him Just a Kid. Tends to be an Innocent Prodigy at times due to his age.
In a setting with mostly older cast, a Child Prodigy Grade Skipper might be introduced to appeal to a younger demographics.
Very often The Smart Guy on The Team, particularly in Super Robot shows.
See also Brainy Baby which is the even younger counterpart and Teen Genius for the older.
For the record, despite some Real Lifeuses of the term, a teenage/high school-age character in college would be a Teen Genius, not this trope.
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Alternate Reality Games
I Love Bees: Yasmine Zaman was a six-year-old prodigy who never lost at backgammon because she could gauge the way the dice came out of her hand and roll anything she wanted.
Anime and Manga
Chiyo-chan in Azumanga Daioh is 10 when she starts high school. While she consistently gets better grades than everyone, being 5 years younger than everyone means she has problems during P.E. and Sex Ed talks.
Negi, kinda. He graduated from Wizarding School at the age of nine and became a teacher in Japan and mastered the language note in two weeks, too. Later on, when he starts learning combat techniques and training seriously, it takes him about 9 months to become one of the most powerful combatants alive. To be fair, Negi spent an inordinate amount of time in magic resorts, scrolls, and the like, to the point where he's now actually twelve years old. Oh, that is only the beginning. As the first volume pointed out—remember, back when he was only 9!—Negi has a degree from Oxford. A college degree, in one of the foremost schools in the entire world, at NINE.
Kurt Godel is also explicitly stated to be one of these. (Or at least, he was when he was still a child.)
Edajima Heihachi from Sakigake!! Otokojuku is capable of fighting a group of monkeys at the age of 7. When he is ten years old, he have read and remembered the content of a whole shelf of thick books, which includes some higher level of Mathematics. At the age of eleven, he is specially admitted in Tokyo Imperial University and is capable of breaking prison bars.
Yukari Sendo from Rosario + Vampire is an 11 year old genius in a class full of teenagers.
Rimone from Simoun is extremely young even for a Sybilla, which doesn't prevent her from being an Ace Pilot rivaled only by Aeru and Neviril.
Kotoko from Divergence Eve,The reason being that she's an advanced android.
Becky from Pani Poni Dash!. Graduated from the MIT and teaching high school girls... at eleven years old.
The 10-year old Erio Mondial from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS, who had already achieved a Mage Rank of B before the show started while his teenage companions were still struggling to achieve the same rank.
Rumor has it that Nanoha, Fate, and Hayate were even sillier examples, being AAA-Rank Mages under the TSAB's employ when they were younger, but eh... who believes such rumours? (Link may be NSFW)
It's revealed in the supplementary manga of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha that the math used in earth and Mid-Childa are very similar, and using advanced magic requires a firm grasp of mathematical formulas. Needless to say, Nanoha and Fate are math geniuses who always ace the subject in school, much to the chagrin of the competitive Alisa, and Fate even helped Nanoha's teenage sister Miyuki with her school work when she was nine.
Ai Haibara from Detective Conan is implied to have been one: if she has a PhD and already led The Syndicate's lab before the age of 18, she must be one in her preteen years.
The titular character seems like a Child Prodigy to those who don't know his true identity. He's actually Older Than He Looks due to an 'un-aging' pill, but even so he is a Teen Genius. And according to the OVA's, Shinichi/Conan was a Child Prodigy when he truly was a child.
May Chang looks to be around 8 years old, but she has the mentality, mannerisms, and fighting skills of an adult. She was even able to decode Scar's brother's research notes mostly by herself. Justified in that she is a Child Prodigy out of necessity rather than genetics as being the Fallen Princess and only hope of a dying clan and being charged with such clan's future, besides probably dealing with assassination attempts that Ling says are common for people in such position, makes you mature fast.
The Elric brothers. They tried to raise their mother from the dead when they were 11 and 10, and had learned alchemy by themselves when much younger. Winry probably also counts - c'mon, were you able to make mechanic limbs when you were eleven? While valid, that makes it sound even more extraordinary than it is in context; the FMA universe is more technologically advanced than ours in the area ofArtificial Limbs, so it's not just a matter of Winry being a Gadgeteer Genius. The FMA manga clarifies that automail "mechanics" are actually closer to surgeons then the people fixing your car. So a more real-world applicable question would be "Were you successfully performing surgery on amputees when you were 11?" And neuro-surgery at that, since they have to link up all the nerves.
A whole slew of characters from Naruto. To name a few: Sasuke Uchiha, Kakashi Hatake, Neji Hyuuga, Gaara, Itachi Uchiha, Naruto's Disappeared Dad Minato Namikaze and Killer Bee.
In Hayate the Combat Butler, while most of the qualifiers are 13, and thus Teen Genius material, Maria entered the school at 10 and graduated at 13. Nagi, Isumi and Sakuya are most of the way through their first year of High School, meaning that they were Child Prodigy material. Nagi doesn't even attend classes and is still considered one of the top students before Hayate comes along.
The Professor in Nichijou, despite being eight years old, has managed to build, among other things, a speech-giving scarf and a Ridiculously Human Robot (which she constantly modifies without the robot noticing).
Taiki Kudou in Digimon Xros Wars who is not aware that he is this. He is both exceedingly athletic and intelligent, and has engaged various sports like a pro. Further more he is capable of forming brilliant strategies within a flash of a second in the heat of battle.
Wendy from Fairy Tail might also count as she was able to learn her offensive spells just by seeing Natsu use it once.
Katie Lindberg from Alyosha was one of these before maturing into a Teen Genius. She achieved a near-perfect SAT score at the age of 6 and graduated at the top of her class at MIT when she was 12.
Subverted in Kaleido Star. May Wong was an ice skating prodigy in the past, but she kept it only as a hobby and pursued becoming an acrobat in the Kaleido Stage instead.
Minoru from Chobits is only 12 years old but he is a computer genius who is an expert on persocoms, and knows the answers to almost all of Hideki's problems when he gets screwed over by technology.
Leonard and Tessa Testarossa of Full Metal Panic! once qualified, having solved some of Einstein's more famous equations before the age of six. By the time of the story they've aged up to Teen Genius.
Horribly subverted in Gundam AGE. The Unknown Enemy has 7-year-old Desil Galette, who at his "tender" age shows massive talent to pilot mechas as well as Psychic Powers-like abilities, making him an X-Rounder. So what do his bosses do? They completely overlook that he's a sadistic Creepy Childand has the mood swings proper of a child his age, making him a battle commanderwithout any supervision or proper training/education. Desil then orders a retreat from a certain victory merely because he got bored, and when in charge of the second X-Rounder that they conscript... he uses her recklessly in battle and accidentally kills her.
The Adventures of Barry Ween, Boy Genius: Actually, calling Barry Ween a child prodigy is kind of like calling Damian a naughty kid; Barry has invented dimension travel devices, working lightsabers, time machines, jetpacks, and ray guns. He secretly runs several multinational corporations in order to finance his experiments, and he can plan and execute a break-in of a top secret (and heavily guarded) government facility in the space of an afternoon. He's ten.
Calvin from Calvin and Hobbes counts; even though he perfoms badly in school and misbehaves, he has an amazing vocabulary, an endless imagination, and is amazingly aware for a six-year-old kid.
Calvin: I used to hate writing assignments, but now I enjoy them. I realized that the purpose of writing is to inflate weak ideas, obscure poor reasoning, and inhibit clarity. With a little practice, writing can be an impenetrable fog! Want to see my book report?
Hobbes (reading Calvin's report): "The dynamics of interbeing and monological imperatives in Dick and Jane: a study in psychic transrelational gender modes."
From Little Man Tate, Jodie Foster's directorial debut, Fred Tate (played by Adam Hann-Byrd, also known for The Ice Storm) reads at age two without having been taught, and in second grade paints with a mature grasp of art history.
The title character of Matilda. At the beginning of the film she starts school and, due to her voracious appetite for books, is already able to multiply large numbers in her head and has an extensive knowledge of literature.
Near in L: change the WorLd is a mathematical genius and solves Maki's homework for her, which turns out to be the secret of the antidote to the virus she carries.
Artemis Fowl counts, being an evil criminal mastermind at age 12. He began his schemes at the age of 10 though.
The Ender's Game series. Half the IF is commanded by a bunch of prepubescent kids. Judging from Alai, puberty wreaks havoc with your political and military judgment.
The titular character in Matilda is so smart, she can multiply large numbers in her head and develops psychic powers.
Computer Jack from the GONE series could hack into a complex police-computer by the age of nine and was only six when he became his school's official tech support. He's so adept in computer science, that in HUNGER he managed to operate and turn off the ENTIRE town's electricity permanently via the 60 year old power plant computer in less than two hours with a bullet in his leg!. He hasn't even hit puberty yet.
Sophie from Child of the Hive is shown at the age of seven capable of speaking near-perfect German after only three lessons. She also has knowledge of Latin by that age and is later shown reading a book in the original French. As a teenager, she is acknowledged as being a mathematical genius and being extraordinarily good at computer programming.
June Iparis frome Marie Lu's Legend Trilogy. Though not a child at the time the story is told, being this is her most notable trait. It's even the title of the second book in the series.
Eden, Days younger brother, is a straighter example. In one particular instance, Day reminices about asking him for help fixing an old radio. Eden was four at the time.
Older Than They Think: one of the first novels to feature a Child Prodigy was The Hampdenshire Wonder in 1911. The protagonist is not only a genius, but a truly superintelligent little kid who judges the whole human culture an "elementary, inchoate, disjunctive patchwork"... at age four and a half. He's right, and TV Tropes proves it.
The Mysterious Benedict Society: All four members of the Mysterious Benedict Society (with the possible exception of Kate, who is less Book Smart, but has plenty of skills and general intelligence to make up for it) were chosen specifically because they were some version of this trope. Constance, however, takes the cake. Sure, she's stubborn, sleepy, and slightly bratty- she's also TWO YEARS OLD.
Jon Masters from Dale Brown's books was a child prodigy in the past who's retained his genius in adulthood. In Wings of Fire it turns out that Dr. Kelsey Duffield is actually a nine year-old girl.
Dairine from the Young Wizards series. At age 3 she decided that she was going to learn everything, by age 4 she taught herself to read, and by age 5 was reading from encyclopedias all by herself.
Ollie of In the Keep of Timewas a very precocious reader for her age; after her jaunt into the past, this has to be re-taught to her.
A disturbingly large percentage of the Remillard clan of the Galactic Milieu trilogy start out at this - and that's not even counting their incredible psychic powers.
The Blue Children from Stephen Baxter's Manifold: Time, transformed through the influence of a civilization in the distant future. "Prodigy" doesn't even begin to describe how frighteningly advanced (and creepy) they are.
Star Holmes, in the Mark Clifton novella Star Bright. At three she constructed a Moebius Strip and while she didn't know what it was called, she knew what it did. By age five she was an accomplished time traveler. Clifton wrote many stories and novels, but is remembered for this one. It became an X Minus Oneradio play.
Charles Wallace Murray in the Madeline L'Engle book A Wrinkle in Time is this, though only his family knows it. Since he refused to talk until age four, and refuses to talk to those who aren't family, he is labeled as "dumb" by the townsfolk. In reality, he's incredibly bright. His mother reads him medical journals as bedtime reading, and he is also able to decipher people's emotions. As a result, he has a hard time relating to his peers. When he does display his intelligence, he is told he is a liar or to stop showing off. He also has a problem with being bullied. However, he still shows signs of being a child; he is incredibly proud of his intelligence and thinks himself, at times, infallible. He is warned against it by the Ladies, though it eventually leads to his posession by IT.
Leonard Stecyk in The Pale King. At 11 years old, he participates in the Meals on Wheels charity, volunteers as a crosswalk guard and hall monitor, donates his ice cream money to UNICEF, has been to origami camp twice, writes letters to publishers about textbook errors, fields all calls and inquiries with regards to his mother's hospitalization, attempts to reorganize his homeroom's seating structure for maximum efficiency, and writes individualized letters of apologies to his bullies. He also intentionally gets a few Bs on his report card solely to ensure he never gets too prideful of being an overachiever.
Bertie Pollock, five-year-old, Italian-speaking saxophonist in the 44 Scotland Street series by Alexander McCall Smith. He Just Wants To Be Normal, but has a Beloved Smother who, despite being an amateur child psychologist, cannot understand this (and also sees an actualchild psychologist who's even worse).
Millicent Min: Girl Genius by Lisa Yee is about an 11-year-old high school senior who is forced to tutor her archenemy who flunked the 6th grade and play volleyball over the summer in order to socialize with normal people her age.
Hours: Although all the children at Bethel Woods Orphanage are above average, Seth takes the cake. By age 9 he had to purposefully dumb down his algebra schoolwork so as not to destroy the bell curve, and by age 11 he invented a machine which defied known physics (out of duct tape and spare parts, no less).
River Tam from Firefly. In the show's present and the R. Tam Sessions, she's a Teen Genius. She was definitely a Child Prodigy when she was younger, but the only time this shows up on-screen is the flashback at the beginning of "Safe".
Micah Sanders from Heroes shows incredible political prowess and was able to lead the resistance against a Government Conspiracy at the age of eleven. Oddly enough, his actor Noah Gray-Cabey is somewhat of a prodigy in real life too. By the time he was 4 he was on Ripley's Believe It Or Not for his amazing piano skills - notably being the youngest soloist to perform with an orchestra at the Sydney Opera House. By the time he was 9 years old, he was in a 9th grade math class.
The backstory for Sheldon Cooper in The Big Bang Theory as he went off to college at 11. Another Teen Genius turned Omnidisciplinary Scientist, when he went to Germany at age 15, he was a visiting professor, not a student, and he got his first PhD (he has two at present) at age 16. May possibly be seen as a Deconstructed adult version of this trope. His early successes have fueled his large ego, making him quite insufferable to those around him. He's around 30, but still has the emotional capacity of a kid since he didn't have a normal childhood. And his vast intelligence alienated him from his own family.
Malcolm in the earlier episodes of Malcolm in the Middle, also his younger brother Dewey (though he plays dumb so he doesn't get the same harsh treatment as Malcolm). Stevie, Lloyd, Dabney, and Cynthia also fit.
The backstory of Charlie of NUMB3RS is that he is a math child prodigy. When he was three or four, he was able to multiply four digit numbers in his head.
Dr. K from Power Rangers RPM starts out as this. In fact, her drawing scientific equations on the sidewalk was what attracted Alphabet Soup agents to kidnap her and raise her in their think tank to develop weapons—at age five. It gets worse, a lot worse, from there.
The new Disney Channel show A.N.T. Farm is all about 11-year-old child prodigies who are allowed to skip to high school. ANT stands for "Advanced Natural Talents".
In the episode of The FiftiesScience Fiction series Tales Of Tomorrow "A Child Is Crying", Lily a nine year old genius who is also an Emotionless Girl. She is so smart she can make predictions with stunning accuracy based on calculations and the US government takes her from her parents to devise defense strategies against a nuclear attack by the Russian. Unfortunately she predicts the world will be destroyed by a nuclear war and that it is unavoidable.
Lady Gaga taught herself how to play piano by ear at the age of four. She went on to become classically trained and wrote her first ballad at thirteen (after prodigy age, but still)
She taught herself piano at 4, wrote her first song by 13, and was playing in bars and nightclubs by 15. While that seems illegal, she had breasts, so no one cared. —Cracked
Jethro Tull's Thick As A Brick revolves around a fictional child prodigy named Gerald "Little Milton" Bostock, an eight year-old boy who, according to the album cover, wrote the lyrics for a poetry contest.
FoxTrot: Jason Fox builds model rockets that provoke diplomatic incidents with China, can write viruses that crash the Internet, does math equations (involving integrations), for fun, apparently built a "miniature warp engine" during science camp, and is ten years old.
Commander Keen is an 8-year old genius. He's already built a rocketship capable of interstellar travel (Dubbed the 'Beans-with-Bacon-Megarocket!) According to the first game, the thing runs on (Dad's) everclear, gets power from (Mom's) car battery, and uses (Mom's) vacuum cleaner (modified) for ion propulsion. Other things Keen built include an interstellar transceiver (the reception was bad, but it did get a signal worth investigating) and a fully-functioning wrist computer (complete with a Pong clone!).
Keen's archenemy Mortimer McMire. The final boss in the original trilogy; Keen's got an IQ of 314, Mortimer has an IQ of 315.
His spiritual successor, Andy of Heart of Darkness, one-ups him by building an INTERDIMENSIONAL craft... and a plasma-cannon. (Keen's zap-gun is not his own invention - he 'borrowed' it from the Vorticon base on Mars.)
Jennifer of Disgaea is said to have been a child prodigy and quite a technology genius, but by the time the plot happens she's no longer a child.
The protagonist is apparently a battling prodigy in Pokémon. S/He begins their journey years before most other people, at age 10 - 14 (RBYG FRLG for eleven) years old. You not only beat everyone in your region (two for GSC and HGSS) with ease, including the Elite Four and Champion, but take down a gang of terrorists (two gangs in Emerald).
In The Sims 2, the highest aspiration rankingnote A sort of mood-meter that measures how many of their wants and/or fears have come true lately for child Sims is "Child Prodigy". However, the game's not programmed to let children do things like go to college or write novels, so it's not really possible to make a legitimate Child Prodigy without using mods.
Sim children in The Sims 3 can write novels, become a chess master and build time machines.
Sunny from Metal Gear Solid 4 is a computer prodigy. She was raised by a computer for most of her developmental years. In Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, she's an engineer who has designed and overseen the construction of an aircraft capable of travel at Mach 23. Revengeance takes place in 2018. She is ten.
Relm from Final Fantasy VI. She's so good at painting that Owzer, the world's biggest art collector, wants a painting from her. She's also the best Magic user of the game, but to many this doesn't make up for her otherwise useless attributes in battle.
Mechanic Puck from Vanguard Bandits. He works faster than the best engineers in a nation and is small enough to fit under the seat of one the ATACs he works on.
Raz from Psychonauts is often considered one, what with all of that "One in a million" talk from Oleander, and Sasha's willingness to work with him.
In Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones, we meet Prince Innes as an adult in his early-to-mid 20's, but Moulder's supports with Vanessa explain that he was one of these. At age 10-12 he was already defeating famous adult archers with ease and doing so via his own efforts. (i.e., he refused help or advantages when he was offered., etc.)
Leon Gheste from Star Ocean: The Second Story is a prime example of this trope. Aside from being a doctor at age 12, he is also the sharpest mind in the largest country on the planet and the creator of the Lancour Hope.
Luke Triton from Professor Layton is a bit of a puzzle master for his age. It is assumed that Clive was a Child Prodigy, as well, as after his adoptive mother died, he went straight into business with a newspaper and then used the woman's money to create an underground London.
Pearl "Pearly" Fey from Ace Attorney. Her cousin Maya has said that she's the most powerful medium ever in the Fey clan, and she's 9. Too bad her mother Morgan is a total Evil Matriarch/Stage Mom who tries to use Pearl as her ticket to take leadership of the clan...
Ryoko Kano from Fighters History is a judo user who started doing it when she was 3 years old.
In Maji de Watashi ni Koi Shinasai!, Monshiro has skipped grades to enter Kawakami High. She also accepts challenges from, and bests, everybody in her class (1-S, so no pushovers) at everything from running a race to a cooking duel. The only thing she's no good at is fighting, for which she has her overwhelmingly powerful bodyguard to cover for.
In later episodes he might be a Teen Genius since the voice actor sounds like he's hitting puberty.
In Sluggy Freelance Bun-Bun is initially reluctant to let little girl Jaya onto the pirate crew he's setting up, 'til he finds out about her hereditary knack for it.
Bun-Bun: Little girls can't be pirates! What do you know about robbing and plundering?
Jaya: Well, my dad's an investment banker and my mom's a lawyer ...
Bun-Bun: Welcome aboard, First Mate!
Scarlett from +EV, who's following in her father's footsteps as a professional poker player.
Zokusho Comics: Jack is awfully young to be throwing around so many powerful combat spells. Especially when one character has already been assassinated for having access to combat magic.
Girl Genius has Gil. When most Sparks (AKA Mad Scientists) break through as teenagers, he manifested his powers as a young boy. Agatha originally started breaking through as a five year old girl, but her uncle put a Power Limiter on her, stopping her from acting like a Spark. She lost it thirteen years later resulting in a Teen Genius instead.
The Autobiography of Jane Eyre: Jane's student Adele is eight years old, and she has these classes as her post-curricular activities: ballet, opera, intermediate Latin, advanced marine zoology, and she went to applied physics boot camp. She's bilingual in English/French, though that might not be that special for a Canadian child. She also likes analysing art and she draws beautifully.
A.J. of the Fairly OddParents. He is in fifth grade and only ten years old and not only does he have the highest I.Q. in his school and his town of Dimmsdale, he frequently invents items which that are futuristic such as a suspended animation tube in one movie. He also can make several clones of himself and is apparently an adviser to the government concerning technology issues.
In the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic episode "the Cutie Mark Chronicles", Twilight Sparkle was shown to be one, after a loud explosion caused her to have a major case of Power Incontinence. She was so magically powerful that Princess Celestia decided to take her on as her personal student. Presumably, the first thing Celestia taught her was how to keep her powers under control.
The Cutie Mark Crusaders are shown to be this in "One Bad Apple". Not only do they build a motorized parade float from scratch AND rig it with a timer-activated booby trap to send it careening off of a cliff at exactly the right time, they also are able to manipulate Babs Seed into stealing it so perfectly that when she shoves them from it, they land on a mattress they placed earlier to cushion their fall.
Cyberchase: Inez. Case in point: this 9-year-old girl knew the scientific family that hawks belong to.
Team Galaxy has Brett, a serious boy genius. Unlike his partners, he actually enjoys homework and mental exercises, and is often annoyed at the lack of intellect the other marshalls possess. Early on, he also detested being called a "kid", although that aspect was later dropped.
Olga was this and suffered because of it (though being a Stepford Smiler, she only told Helga this).
Helga is a much more subtle version of this trope (and it's never really ventured on). It's only revealed in bits in pieces such as being the only one (other than Olga) to score a 100 on the school's aptitude test, learning a Shakespeare play in one night (though not seeming particularly interested in anything he's written earlier on), winning poetry contests several times and having her shrink bring up her above average knowledge.
Dr Bliss: "That's very astute for a 4th grader."
Inspector Gadget: Inspector Gadget's niece Penny, so much so that she and their dog Brain are the ones who actually do most of the work.
Avatar: The Last Airbender has Aang, Toph, Katara, and Azula, each of whom is shown to be extremely talented in their respective superpowered martial arts. All of them become Teen Geniuses as the series progresses.
Aang is the youngest Master Airbender in history and a Physical God who mastered all three remaining bending arts within a span of twelve months, a feat that took many years for the previous Avatars.
The only thing that was holding Katara's waterbending skill back was lacking any sort of tutelage. Every single waterbender in the Southern Tribe was wiped out by a war of attrition, leaving only her; she wasn't surrounded by Earthbenders like Toph, she literally had no one but herself to teach her. Once she overcame endemic male chauvinism in the Northern Tribe and studied under the tutelage of Master Pakku, she went from novice to favorite student in a very short time, and was even entrusted by Master Pakku to complete Aang's waterbending training once Team Avatar departed the North Pole.
At a very young age, Azula was shown pulling off firebending techniques her older and relatively skilled brother Zuko had problems with. She is also one of three characters in the original series knows how to use lightning.
The Broflovski brothers. Ike moreso and more blatant than his older brother. Ike's entered kindergarten 2 years early, watches conservative political commentary, makes a macaroni replica of The Last Supper, has been hired to help cover up a massive jewel heist and is a knight in Canada. As of seasons 15ish he's only 4.
Kyle's also no slouch. He's regularly portrayed as the top student in his class, has the highest capabilities with the computer, including photoshopping a photo to fool the Japanese government to stop whaling and get his best friend out of trouble and single-handedly thwarting a terrorist attack with some inspired Google-fu. He's also shown more than a slight capability with philosophy and managed to remove himself from reality.
Cartman is a Child Prodigy only, and ONLY when motivated by evil.
Blossom is the brains of The Powerpuff Girls. This becomes subverted in "Him Diddle Riddle" when the villain makes the girls take their SATs (as part of a series of real-time challenges to find the Professor), and Blossom scores a measley 10 while Bubbles aces it with a 1075 score.
The Simpsons: Lisa Simpson is extremely intelligent and a talented saxophone player. She has great interest in science and environment.
Transformers Prime: Rafael "Raf" Jorge Gonzales Esquivel is a master computer programmer and hacker. He's been able to understand code since he was three.
Lincoln Clark and Fenwick in Dogstar are both scientific geniuses.
Kim Ung-Yong of South Korea was reported with an IQ of 210 in the mid-1960s. He was a guest student in physics at Hangyang University at three (both his parents were professors there) and appeared on Japan's "World Surprise Show" at four composing poetry, speaking four languages and solving integral calculus problems. NASA paid for him to attend Colorado State University and then hired him at age 11. He worked there until he was about 17, later saying it was monumentally boring and he missed his mother. He went home and changed fields entirely. Today he is a professor of civil engineering at a college near his home town.
Akiane Kramarik, who began painting visions she had at age 11 with staggering clarity and realism. She is completely self-taught and her paintings routinely fetch hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Somerset Hughes of London was cited along with Ung-Yong in the Guinness World Record Book as having an IQ above 200.
Srinivasa Ramanujan. He made theorems at age 12 that you could get a PhD for proving today. He was an unparalleled mathematical genius. Especially considering that he started out working alone, using a little old reference book listing 6000 theorems with no discussion. And he flunked his school exams because his English wasn't good enough.
Yoko Honna, who was around 10 when she started her career.
A few Chess grandmasters, specially world champions. Small example: Jose Raul Capablanca learned to play chess at the age of 4 and had beaten the Cuban national champion by the age of 12!
Sho Yano, who started university by age 9 and is in medical school and studying for a PhD on the side by age 12. According to news reports, he was (deep breath....) reading by age 2, writing by age 3, composing music at age 5, scored 1500 on his SATs (out of 1600) at age 8, entered college at age 9, entered medical school at age 12, finished his Ph.D. in three years, and this year got his M.D. from the University of Chicago at age 21. His IQ is estimated at over 200. Oh, and he's also a concert pianist who's played at the Ravinia festival. Do you have an inferiority complex yet?
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. If not the outright Trope Codifier, he's certainly the most famous example. He started playing piano at age 3, was composing by age 5, and wrote his first symphony at age 8. He was also known to have been challenged by famous musicians during his youth in improvisation contests, where the performer would compose on the spot and try to outperform his rival in this manner. He disposed of all of them. It's said that after they gave up, he would say, "any more?"
French pianist and composer Camille Saint-Saens gave his first public piano recital at age 11. For an encore, he went back on stage and asked the audience to name any of the 35 sonatas for piano by Beethoven, which he would then play from memory.
Jazz pianist Art Tatum learned to play church hymns and piano rolls at 3. Rumors would circulate that he played piano rolls meant for two people (and he was blind).
Blaise Pascal started his mathematician career when he was nine.
John Stuart Mill had one of those Make Your Child A Genius dads. He was crammed from an early age and while he enjoyed a lot of his studies, his emotional health suffered and he had a nervous breakdown at twenty. It took him years to recover, but eventually became one of the preeminent philosophers of the 19th century.
While undoubtedly gifted, William James Sidis had a Make Your Child A Genius dad as well. No one knows how intelligent he really was because his parents tended to exaggerate. He entered Harvard at age 11 and later taught math there. His much-publicized "mental breakdown" may actually have been his parents' coverup for his Socialist activism, which had gotten him arrested on May Day 1919.
Schoolteacher Benjamin Heath Malkin, an acquaintance of William Blake, was accused of force-educating his children when his five-year-old son Thomas died in 1806. Thomas was your standard child prodigy who ran an imaginary country (with maps) on the side. His death was prolonged and unpleasant. A doctor visited the day after he died to give Malkin a "The Reason You Suck" Speech about Thomas having died of "brain fever" from overstudy, citing Thomas' "large head" as proof. Malkin actually had to request an autopsy to prove the cause of death was inflammatory bowel disease.
In 1955, the poet Minou Drouet rocked France with her semi-surreal poems. She became a world-renowned celebrity. Controversy raged around her and she was repeatedly tested to ascertain that she, not her overbearing stage mother, had written the poems. The constant demands for proof wore her out. From "My Friend the Tree" and "White road, where do you go?" she started writing stuff like "My heart has become nothing but a stupid little mayonnaise whisk". To a friend, she confided: "Our street is vomiting journalists nonstop. It feels like the whole world is after me. I wish I were dead. They keep on and on at me with their questions. I think the only words I can utter are fear, pain, death." She was nine years old.
Composer Jay Greenberg (b. 1991) has been compared to Mozart and other musical prodigies. He entered the Juilliard conservatory at age 11, and had written five symphonies by the time he was 13.
This dude. Jacob Barnett, 12 higher IQ Einstein develops theory relativity.
Marvin Hamlisch had shown musical aptitude at a young age, enrolling in what is now the Julliard School Pre-College Division at age 7. One of his earliest songs written in his teens was sung by Liza Minnelli on her debut album.