Mathematical physics

An area of science concerned with the application of mathematical concepts to the physical sciences and the development of mathematical ideas in response to the needs of physics. Historically, the concept of mathematical physics was synonymous with that of theoretical physics. In present-day terminology, however, a distinction is made between the two. Whereas most of theoretical physics uses a large amount of mathematics as a tool and as a language, mathematical physics places greater emphasis on mathematical rigor, and devotes attention to the development of areas of mathematics that are, or show promise to be, useful to physics. The results obtained by pure mathematicians, with no thought to applications, are almost always found to be both useful and effective in formulating physical theories.