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|Born||14 May 1701|
|Died||20 May 1782 (aged 81)|
William Emerson (14 May 1701 – 20 May 1782) was an English mathematician. He was born in Hurworth, near Darlington, where his father, Dudley Emerson, also a mathematician, taught a school.
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to the west and Scotland to the north-northwest. The Irish Sea lies west of England and the Celtic Sea lies to the southwest. England is separated from continental Europe by the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south. The country covers five-eighths of the island of Great Britain, which lies in the North Atlantic, and includes over 100 smaller islands, such as the Isles of Scilly and the Isle of Wight.
A mathematician is someone who uses an extensive knowledge of mathematics in his or her work, typically to solve mathematical problems.
Darlington is a large market town in County Durham, in North East England. With a population of 105,564 in 2011, the town lies on the River Skerne, a tributary of the River Tees. The town is administered as part of the Borough of Darlington. The town owes much of its development to the influence of local Quaker families in the Georgian and Victorian era, and who provided much of the finance and vision in creating the Stockton and Darlington Railway, the world's first steam locomotive powered, permanent passenger railway. The town is often colloquially referred to as 'Darlo'.
William himself had a small estate in Weardale called Castle Gate situated not far from Eastgate where he would repair to work throughout the Summer on projects as disparate as stonemasonry and watchmaking. Unsuccessful as a teacher, he devoted himself entirely to studious retirement. Possessed of remarkable energy and forthrightness of speech, Emerson published many works which are singularly free from errata.
Weardale is a dale, or valley, of the east side of the Pennines in County Durham, England. Large parts of Weardale fall within the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) – the second largest AONB in England and Wales. The upper valley is surrounded by high fells and heather grouse moors. The River Wear flows through Weardale before reaching Bishop Auckland and then Durham, meeting the sea at Sunderland.
In The Principles of Mechanics (1754) he shows a wind-powered vehicle in which the vertically mounted propeller gives direct power to the front wheels via a system of cogs. In mechanics he never advanced a proposition which he had not previously tested in practice, nor published an invention without first proving its effects by a model. He was skilled in the science of music, the theory of sounds, and the ancient and modern scales; but he never attained any excellence as a performer. He died on 20 May 1782 at his native village, where his gravestone bears epitaphs in Latin and Hebrew.
Mechanics is that area of science concerned with the behaviour of physical bodies when subjected to forces or displacements, and the subsequent effects of the bodies on their environment. The scientific discipline has its origins in Ancient Greece with the writings of Aristotle and Archimedes. During the early modern period, scientists such as Galileo, Kepler, and Newton laid the foundation for what is now known as classical mechanics. It is a branch of classical physics that deals with particles that are either at rest or are moving with velocities significantly less than the speed of light. It can also be defined as a branch of science which deals with the motion of and forces on objects. The field is yet less widely understood in terms of quantum theory.
Music is an art form and cultural activity whose medium is sound organized in time. General definitions of music include common elements such as pitch, rhythm, dynamics, and the sonic qualities of timbre and texture. Different styles or types of music may emphasize, de-emphasize or omit some of these elements. Music is performed with a vast range of instruments and vocal techniques ranging from singing to rapping; there are solely instrumental pieces, solely vocal pieces and pieces that combine singing and instruments. The word derives from Greek μουσική . See glossary of musical terminology.
Latin is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. The Latin alphabet is derived from the Etruscan and Greek alphabets and ultimately from the Phoenician alphabet.
Emerson dressed in old clothes and his manners were uncouth. He wore his shirt back to front and his legs wrapped in sacking so as not to scorch them as he sat over the fire. He declined an offer to become FRS because it would cost too much after all the expense of farthing candles he had been put to in the course of his life of study. Emerson rode regularly into Darlington on a horse like Don Quixote's, led by a hired small boy. In old age, plagued by the stone, he would alternately pray and curse, wishing his soul 'could shake off the rags of mortality without such a clitter-me-clatter.'
The Ingenious Gentleman Sir Quixote of La Mancha, or just Don Quixote, is a Spanish novel by Miguel de Cervantes. Published in two parts, in 1605 and 1615, Don Quixote is the most influential work of literature from the Spanish Golden Age and the entire Spanish literary canon. As a founding work of modern Western literature, it regularly appears high on lists of the greatest works of fiction ever published, such as the Bokklubben World Library collection that cites Don Quixote as the authors' choice for the "best literary work ever written".
Like his fellow County Durham savant John Bird, Emerson makes an appearance in Mason and Dixon by Thomas Pynchon.
County Durham is a county in North East England. The county town is Durham, a cathedral city. The largest settlement is Darlington, closely followed by Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees. It borders Tyne and Wear to the north east, Northumberland to the north, Cumbria to the west and North Yorkshire to the south. The county's historic boundaries stretch between the rivers Tyne and Tees, thus including places such as Gateshead, Jarrow, South Shields and Sunderland.
John Bird (1709–1776) was a British mathematical instrument maker. He was born at Bishop Auckland. He came to London in 1740 where he worked for Jonathan Sisson and George Graham. By 1745 he had his own business in the Strand. Bird was commissioned to make a brass quadrant 8 feet across for the Royal Observatory at Greenwich, where it was mounted on February 16, 1750, and where it is still preserved. Soon after, duplicates were ordered for France, Spain and Russia.
Thomas Ruggles Pynchon Jr. is an American novelist. A MacArthur Fellow, he is noted for his dense and complex novels. His fiction and non-fiction writings encompass a vast array of subject matter, genres and themes, including history, music, science, and mathematics. For Gravity's Rainbow, Pynchon won the 1973 U.S. National Book Award for Fiction.
Emerson’s works include:
Euclid, sometimes called Euclid of Alexandria to distinguish him from Euclid of Megara, was a Greek mathematician, often referred to as the "founder of geometry" or the "father of geometry". He was active in Alexandria during the reign of Ptolemy I. His Elements is one of the most influential works in the history of mathematics, serving as the main textbook for teaching mathematics from the time of its publication until the late 19th or early 20th century. In the Elements, Euclid deduced the theorems of what is now called Euclidean geometry from a small set of axioms. Euclid also wrote works on perspective, conic sections, spherical geometry, number theory, and mathematical rigour.
Sir Isaac Newton was an English mathematician, physicist, astronomer, theologian, and author who is widely recognised as one of the most influential scientists of all time, and a key figure in the scientific revolution. His book Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica, first published in 1687, laid the foundations of classical mechanics. Newton also made seminal contributions to optics, and shares credit with Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz for developing the infinitesimal calculus.
1702 (MDCCII) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar and a common year starting on Thursday of the Julian calendar, the 1702nd year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 702nd year of the 2nd millennium, the 2nd year of the 18th century, and the 3rd year of the 1700s decade. As of the start of 1702, the Gregorian calendar was 11 days ahead of the Julian calendar, which remained in localized use until 1923. In the Swedish calendar it was a common year starting on Wednesday, one day ahead of the Julian and ten days behind the Gregorian calendar.
Sir William Rowan Hamilton MRIA was an Irish mathematician. While still an undergraduate he was appointed Andrews professor of Astronomy and Royal Astronomer of Ireland, and lived at Dunsink Observatory. He made important contributions to optics, classical mechanics and algebra. Although Hamilton was not a physicist–he regarded himself as a pure mathematician–his work was of major importance to physics, particularly his reformulation of Newtonian mechanics, now called Hamiltonian mechanics. This work has proven central to the modern study of classical field theories such as electromagnetism, and to the development of quantum mechanics. In pure mathematics, he is best known as the inventor of quaternions.
Sir William Chambers was a Scottish-Swedish architect, based in London. Among his best-known works are Somerset House, London, and the pagoda at Kew. Chambers was a founder member of the Royal Academy.
Robert Simson was a Scottish mathematician and professor of mathematics at the University of Glasgow. The Simson line is named after him.
Thomas Warton was an English literary historian, critic, and poet. From 1785 to 1790 he was the Poet Laureate of England. He is sometimes called Thomas Warton the younger to distinguish him from his father Thomas Warton the elder. His most famous poem remains The Pleasures of Melancholy, a representative work of the Graveyard poets.
Isaac Todhunter FRS, was an English mathematician who is best known today for the books he wrote on mathematics and its history.
Benjamin Robins was a pioneering English scientist, Newtonian mathematician, and military engineer.
The Office of Works was established in the English Royal household in 1378 to oversee the building of the royal castles and residences. In 1832 it became the Works Department forces within the Office of Woods, Forests, Land Revenues, Works and Buildings. It was reconstituted as a government department in 1851 and became part of the Ministry of Works in 1940.
Charles FitzRoy-Scudamore was a British politician who sat in the House of Commons for 49 years from 1733 to 1782.
Peniston Lamb, 1st Viscount Melbourne, known as Sir Peniston Lamb, 2nd Baronet, from 1768 to 1770, was a British politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1768 to 1793. He was the father of Prime Minister William Lamb, 2nd Viscount Melbourne.
Francis Maseres was an English lawyer. He is known as attorney general of the Province of Quebec, judge, mathematician, historian, member of the Royal Society, and cursitor baron of the exchequer.
James Wood was a mathematician, and Master of St John's College, Cambridge. In his later years he was Dean of Ely.
Benjamin Donn or Donne (1729–1798) was an English mathematician.
William Ludlam (1717–1788) was an English clergyman and mathematician.
James Hann (1799–1856) was an English mathematician, teacher and textbook writer.
General Alexander Mackay was a Scottish soldier in the British Army, and a politician. The son of George Mackay, 3rd Lord Reay, he was the younger brother of George Mackay of Skibo (c.1715–1782).