# Problem in displaying output when finding eigenvalues of a Matrix

Basically I am trying to find symbolic eigenvalues of a 4x4 Matrix. Using the below code

    {P, Q, 0, 0},
{R, S, Subscript[θ, 1], Subscript[θ, 2]},
{0, 0 , P - λ, Q},
{σ Subscript[θ, 1], σ Subscript[θ, 2],
R, S - λ}
} );
X = Eigenvalues[M]


I expect to get the answer in a formated form, but instead I am getting the expression.

{Root[Q^2 R^2 - 2 P Q R S + P^2 S^2 + P Q R λ -
P^2 S λ + Q R S λ - P S^2 λ -
Q R λ^2 +
P S λ^2 + (-2 P - 2 S + 2 λ) #1^3 + #1^4 -
Q^2 σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$1$$, $$2$$]\) +
2 P Q σ Subscript[θ, 1] Subscript[θ, 2] -
Q λ σ Subscript[θ, 1] Subscript[θ,
2] - P^2 σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\) +
P λ σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\) + #1^2 (P^2 -
2 Q R + 4 P S + S^2 - 3 P λ -
3 S λ + λ^2 - σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\)) + #1 (2 P Q R \
- 2 P^2 S + 2 Q R S - 2 P S^2 + P^2 λ - 2 Q R λ +
4 P S λ + S^2 λ - P λ^2 -
S λ^2 -
2 Q σ Subscript[θ, 1] Subscript[θ, 2] +
2 P σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\) - λ \
σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\)) &, 1],
Root[Q^2 R^2 - 2 P Q R S + P^2 S^2 + P Q R λ -
P^2 S λ + Q R S λ - P S^2 λ -
Q R λ^2 +
P S λ^2 + (-2 P - 2 S + 2 λ) #1^3 + #1^4 -
Q^2 σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$1$$, $$2$$]\) +
2 P Q σ Subscript[θ, 1] Subscript[θ, 2] -
Q λ σ Subscript[θ, 1] Subscript[θ,
2] - P^2 σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\) +
P λ σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\) + #1^2 (P^2 -
2 Q R + 4 P S + S^2 - 3 P λ -
3 S λ + λ^2 - σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\)) + #1 (2 P Q R \
- 2 P^2 S + 2 Q R S - 2 P S^2 + P^2 λ - 2 Q R λ +
4 P S λ + S^2 λ - P λ^2 -
S λ^2 -
2 Q σ Subscript[θ, 1] Subscript[θ, 2] +
2 P σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\) - λ \
σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\)) &, 2],
Root[Q^2 R^2 - 2 P Q R S + P^2 S^2 + P Q R λ -
P^2 S λ + Q R S λ - P S^2 λ -
Q R λ^2 +
P S λ^2 + (-2 P - 2 S + 2 λ) #1^3 + #1^4 -
Q^2 σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$1$$, $$2$$]\) +
2 P Q σ Subscript[θ, 1] Subscript[θ, 2] -
Q λ σ Subscript[θ, 1] Subscript[θ,
2] - P^2 σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\) +
P λ σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\) + #1^2 (P^2 -
2 Q R + 4 P S + S^2 - 3 P λ -
3 S λ + λ^2 - σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\)) + #1 (2 P Q R \
- 2 P^2 S + 2 Q R S - 2 P S^2 + P^2 λ - 2 Q R λ +
4 P S λ + S^2 λ - P λ^2 -
S λ^2 -
2 Q σ Subscript[θ, 1] Subscript[θ, 2] +
2 P σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\) - λ \
σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\)) &, 3],
Root[Q^2 R^2 - 2 P Q R S + P^2 S^2 + P Q R λ -
P^2 S λ + Q R S λ - P S^2 λ -
Q R λ^2 +
P S λ^2 + (-2 P - 2 S + 2 λ) #1^3 + #1^4 -
Q^2 σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$1$$, $$2$$]\) +
2 P Q σ Subscript[θ, 1] Subscript[θ, 2] -
Q λ σ Subscript[θ, 1] Subscript[θ,
2] - P^2 σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\) +
P λ σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\) + #1^2 (P^2 -
2 Q R + 4 P S + S^2 - 3 P λ -
3 S λ + λ^2 - σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\)) + #1 (2 P Q R \
- 2 P^2 S + 2 Q R S - 2 P S^2 + P^2 λ - 2 Q R λ +
4 P S λ + S^2 λ - P λ^2 -
S λ^2 -
2 Q σ Subscript[θ, 1] Subscript[θ, 2] +
2 P σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\) - λ \
σ
\!$$\*SubsuperscriptBox[\(θ$$, $$2$$, $$2$$]\)) &, 4]}


However, if I assign numerical values to all the constants used and then use the command ClearAll["Global*"];

and repeat the cell execution, I am getting the expected result (Formatted Math) which in Input form corresponds to

{1/2 (P + S - Sqrt[P^2 + 4 Q R - 2 P S + S^2]),
1/2 (P + S + Sqrt[P^2 + 4 Q R - 2 P S + S^2]),
1/2 (P + S - Sqrt[P^2 + 4 Q R - 2 P S + S^2] - 2 λ),
1/2 (P + S + Sqrt[P^2 + 4 Q R - 2 P S + S^2] - 2 λ)}


Which is what I wanted. I do not understand why assigning numerical values and then clearing them seems to solve the problem. Is there any way to avoid the problem in the first place? Note - The same problem does not occur when I take an arbitrary symbolic 2x2 matrix.

• Do you expect the eigenvalues to be independent of theta1 and theta2 (which seems unlikely). Is it possible you set theta1 and theta2 to zero, which simplifies the eigenvalues? The reason I ask is because ClearAll does not remove a definition like Subscript[[Theta], 1]=0. Instead, select Evaluation->Quit Kernel->Local to clear. Jan 24, 2023 at 18:52
• No, the eigenvalues should be dependent on theta_1 and theta_2, I understand that the simplification occurs only because they are taken as zero now. However my question still stands, how to get the output in a formated form as I get for smaller Matrices?
– Anik
Jan 24, 2023 at 18:59
• Why do you think there is a simpler form? It's the roots of a 4th order polynomial. Jan 24, 2023 at 19:00
• I understand the problem, I was expecting a closed answer that did not involve the Root[] function. Apparently, that is not possible. Thanks !!
– Anik
Jan 24, 2023 at 19:06
• It might be possible to represent things in a different way... the first two answers to this question are pretty informative about working with root objects... mathematica.stackexchange.com/a/126156/1783 Jan 24, 2023 at 20:10

(M = {{P, Q, 0, 0},
{R, S, Subscript[θ, 1], Subscript[θ, 2]},
{0, 0, P - λ, Q},
{σ Subscript[θ, 1], σ Subscript[θ, 2], R, S - λ}}) //
MatrixForm


X = Eigenvalues[M];

X[[1]]


The Root expressions are a compact representation. They can be converted to radical representation by ToRadicals

X // LeafCount

(* 1033 *)

(X2 = X // ToRadicals) // LeafCount

(* 33817 *)

X2[[1]] // Short[#, 6] &


The expanded form of the expressions is too large to be of practical use. The Root` expressions convey the same info, i.e., complicated expression.