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Encyclopedia > Thomas Harriot

Thomas Harriot (ca. 1560July 2, 1621) was an English astronomer, astrologer, and mathematician. Some sources give his surname as Harriott or Hariot. Events February 27 - The Treaty of Berwick, which would expel the French from Scotland, is signed by England and the Congregation of Scotland The first tulip bulb was brought from Turkey to the Netherlands. ... July 2 is the 183rd day of the year (184th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 182 days remaining. ... Events February 9 - Gregory XV is elected pope. ... An astronomer or astrophysicist is a scientist whose area of research is astronomy or astrophysics. ... An astrologer, in modern times, is a person who practices a form or forms of astrology; in earlier times, they were observer of the stars. ... Leonhard Euler is considered by many people to be one of the greatest mathematicians of all time A mathematician is a person whose primary area of study and research is mathematics. ...

He attended Oxford University. He founded the "English school" of algebra. The University of Oxford, located in the city of Oxford in England, is the oldest university in the English-speaking world. ... Algebra (from Arabic: الجبر, al-ğabr) is a branch of mathematics concerning the study of structure, relation and quantity. ...

He used his knowledge of astronomy/astrology to provide navigational expertise for Sir Walter Raleigh, and was also involved in designing Raleigh's ships and served as his accountant as well. He went on at least one expedition and spent time in the New World visiting Roanoke Island off the coast of North Carolina. His account of the voyage, Brief and True Report of the New Found Land of Virginia, was published in 1588. The Report contains an early account of the Native American population encountered by the expedition; it was very influential upon later English explorers and colonists. He wrote: "Whereby it may be hoped, if means of good government be used, that they may in short time be brought to civility and the embracing of true religion." At the same time, his views of Native Americans' industry and capacity to learn were later largely ignored in favor of the parts of the "Report" about extractable minerals and resources. It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with History of astrology. ... Walter Raleigh, by Nicholas Hilliard, c. ... A map of the Roanoke area, by John White Roanoke Island is an island in the Outer Banks of North Carolina, United States. ... Official language(s) English Capital Raleigh Largest city Charlotte Area  Ranked 28th  - Total 53,865 sq mi (139,509 km²)  - Width 500 miles (805 km)  - Length 150 miles (240 km)  - % water 9. ... 1588 was a leap year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar or a leap year starting on Monday of the Julian calendar. ... An Atsina named Assiniboin Boy Photo by Edward S. Curtis. ...

As scientific adviser during the voyage, Harriot was asked by Raleigh to find the most efficient way to stack cannon balls on the deck of the ship. His ensuing theory about the close-packing of spheres seems to be an early predecessor of later atomic theory. At times he was accused of believing in atomism; some people see a link. His correspondence about optics with Johannes Kepler, in which he described some of his ideas, later influenced Kepler's conjecture. In natural philosophy, atomism is the theory that all the objects in the universe are composed of very small, indestructible elements - atoms. ... Johannes Kepler Johannes Kepler (December 27, 1571 – November 15, 1630), a key figure in the scientific revolution, was a German mathematician, astrologer, astronomer, and an early writer of science fiction stories. ... In mathematics, the Kepler conjecture is a conjecture about sphere packing in three dimensional Euclidean space. ...

He also studied optics and refraction and apparently discovered Snell's law 20 years before Snell did, although, like so much of his work, this remained unpublished. Optical redirects here. ... The straw seems to be broken, due to refraction of light as it emerges into the air. ... Snells law is the simple formula used to calculate the refraction of light when travelling between two media of differing refractive index. ...

Raleigh later fell from favour, and Harriot's other patron Henry Percy, the Ninth Earl of Northumberland, was imprisoned in 1605 in connection with the Gunpowder Plot as he was the second cousin of one of the conspirators, Thomas Percy. Harriot himself was interrogated and briefly imprisoned but soon released. Henry Percy, 9th Earl of Northumberland (1564 - 1632) is better known for the circles he moved in than for his own achievements. ... A contemporaneous sketch of the conspirators The Gunpowder Plot of 1605 was a desperate but failed attempt by a group of provincial English Catholics to kill King James I of England, his family, and most of the Protestant aristocracy in one attack by blowing up the Houses of Parliament during... Thomas Percy (plotter) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia /**/ @import /skins-1. ...

The 1607 apparition of what later came to be known as Comet Halley caused him to turn his attention to astronomy. He was an early user of telescopes and was one of the first to observe sunspots. The observatory on the campus of the College of William and Mary is named in his honor. Events January 20 - Tidal wave swept along the Bristol Channel, killing 2000 people. ... Comet Halley, officially designated 1P/Halley, more generally known as Halleys Comet after Edmond Halley, is a comet that can be seen every 75-76 years. ... A sunspot is a region on the Suns surface (photosphere) that is marked by a lower temperature than its surroundings and intense magnetic activity, which inhibits convection, forming areas of low surface temperature. ... MolÄ—tai Astronomical Observatory An observatory is a location used for observing terrestrial and/or celestial events. ... The College of William and Mary (also referred to as William and Mary, W&M or simply The College by those close to it) is a small public university located in Williamsburg, Virginia, USA. It is the second-oldest institution of higher education in the United States. ...

Harriot's accomplishments remain relatively obscure because he did not publish any of his results and because many of his manuscripts have been lost; those that remain are in the British Museum and in the Percy family archives at Petworth House (Sussex) and Alnwick Castle (Northumberland). After his death in 1621, his executors published his "Artes Analyticae Praxis" on algebra in 1631. The centre of the museum was redeveloped in 2000 to become the Great Court, with a tessellated glass roof by Foster and Partners surrounding the original Reading Room. ... Algebra (from Arabic: الجبر, al-ğabr) is a branch of mathematics concerning the study of structure, relation and quantity. ...

External links

  Results from FactBites:
BSHM: Gazetteer -- LONDON People H-M (7753 words)
Thomas Harriot (or Harriott) (1560-1621), the early algebraist and astronomer, inventor of the signs < and > (in somewhat different forms), was navigational tutor to Sir Walter Raleigh and his sea captains.
Thomas Archer Hirst (1830-1892) lodged with John Tyndall in a house formerly belonging to T. Huxley, 1860-1869.
Thomas Robert Malthus (1766-1834) is known to have lived in a series of London garrets in the late 18C and early 19C.
  More results at FactBites »



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