London, South Kensington
30 November 2001
HUTTON, Charles (1737-1823). A Philosophical and Mathematical Dictionary, London: For the Author, 1815.
2 volumes, 4° (266 x 213mm.), half titles, 41 engraved plates, illustrations (slight spotting and offsetting), 20th-century half roan (a trifle rubbed).
Second edition. Hutton established himself as a school master in Newcastle before becoming professor of mathematics at the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich, in 1773, remaining in the post for 34 years. His contribution to mathematics is regarded as 'practical and useful,' if unoriginal, and the Philosophical and Mathematical Dictionary, which first appeared in 1795, is probably the best known of his many works. 'Although it was criticised as unbalanced in content, unduly cautious in tone, and sometimes lacking judgement, the dictionary has served as a valuable source for historians of mathematics' (DNB). It also forms a valuable contribution to scientific biography. (2)
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