Isaac Newton vs. Gottfried Leibniz
These two Olympic-level mathletes sparked an international war of words over who had invented calculus first and oh, how it raged. Can you imagine anything nerdier than a pair of number-crazy obsessives scrapping over whose brain barfed out higher derivatives first?! Today, the pair are co-credited for the discovery of the elegant mathematical technique, but at the time, these two functions were quickly approaching their limit, and it was certainly not an infinitesimal affair. PS. Calculus word play is hard!