Mathematician:Edward Wright

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English mathematician noted for his contributions to the science of cartography.




  • Born: Unknown
  • Baptised: 8 Oct 1561, Garveston, Norfolk, East Anglia, England
  • Died: November 1615, London, England

Theorems and Definitions


  • 1599: Certaine Errors in Navigation, arising either of the Ordinarie Erroneous Making or Vsing of the Sea Chart, Compasse, Crosse Staffe, and Tables of Declination of the Sunne, and Fixed Starres Detected and Corrected. (The Voyage of the Right Ho. George Earle of Cumberl. to the Azores, &c.)
  • Other editions of this work were published as follows:
    • 1599: Errors in nauigation 1 Error of two, or three whole points of the compas, and more somtimes [sic], by reason of making the sea-chart after the accustomed maner ... 2 Error of one whole point, and more many times, by neglecting the variation of the compasse. 3 Error of a degree and more sometimes, in the vse of the crosse staffe ... 4 Error of 11. or 12. minures [sic] in the declination of the sunne, as it is set foorth in the regiments most commonly vsed among mariners: and consequently error of halfe a degree in the place of the sunne. 5 Error of halfe a degree, yea an whole degree and more many times in the declinations of the principall fixed starres, set forth to be obserued by mariners at sea. Detected and corrected by often and diligent obseruation. Whereto is adioyned, the right H. the Earle of Cumberland his voyage to the Azores in the yeere 1589. wherin were taken 19. Spanish and Leaguers ships, together with the towne and platforme of Fayal
    • 1610: Certaine Errors in Navigation, Detected and Corrected with Many Additions that were not in the Former Edition... [with an Addition Touching the Variation of the Compasse]
    • 1657: Certaine Errors in Navigation Detected and Corrected, with Many Additions that were not in the Former Edition
  • 1600: Chapter 12 of book 4 of William Gilbert's De Magnete, magneticisque corporibus, et de magno magnete tellure; Physiologia nova, plurimis & argumentis, & experimentis demonstrata (The Magnet, Magnetic Bodies, and the Great Magnet the Earth; New Natural Science, Demonstrated by Many Arguments and Experiments) (Latin)
  • 1602: The Making, Description and Use of the Two Instruments for Sea-men to find out the Latitude ... First Invented by Dr. Gilbert, published in The Theoriques of the Seuen Planets shewing all their Diuerse Motions, and all other Accidents, called Passions, thereunto Belonging. Now more Plainly set forth in our Mother Tongue by M. Blundeuile, than euer they haue been heretofore in any other Tongue whatsoeuer, and that with such Pleasant Demonstratiue Figures, as euery Man that hath any Skill in Arithmeticke, may easily Vnderstand the same. ... VVhereunto is added by the said Master Blundeuile, a Breefe Extract by him made, of Maginus his Theoriques, for the Better Vnderstanding of the Prutenicall Tables, to Calculate thereby the Diuerse Motions of the Seuen Planets. There is also hereto added, the Making, Description, and Vse, of Two Most Ingenious and Necessarie Instruments for Sea-men ... First Inuented by M. Doctor Gilbert ... and now here Plainely set downe in our Mother Tongue by Master Blundeuile (with Henry Briggs and Thomas Blundeville)
  • 1613: The Description and Vse of the Sphære. Deuided into Three Principal Partes: whereof the First Intreateth especially of the Circles of the Vppermost Moueable Sphære, and of the Manifould Vses of euery one of them Seuerally: the Second Sheweth the Plentifull Vse of the Vppermost Sphære, and of the Circles therof Ioyntly: the Third Conteyneth the Description of the Orbes whereof the Sphæres of the Sunne and Moone haue beene supposed to be Made, with their Motions and Vses. By Edward Wright. The Contents of each Part are more particularly Set Downe in the Table
  • 1614: A Short Treatise of Dialling Shewing, the Making of All Sorts of Sun-dials, Horizontal, Erect, Direct, Declining, Inclining, Reclining; vpon any Flat or Plaine Superficies, howsoeuer Placed, with Ruler and Compasse onely, without any Arithmeticall Calculation

Edited and translated

  • 1599: The Hauen-finding Art, or The VVay to Find any Hauen or Place at Sea, by the Latitude and Variation. Lately Published in the Dutch, French, and Latine Tongues, by Commandement of the Right Honourable Count Mauritz of Nassau, Lord High Admiral of the Vnited Prouinces of the Low Countries, Enioyning all Seamen that Take Charge of Ships vnder his Iurisdiction, to Make Diligent Obseruation, in all their Voyages, according to the Directions Prescribed herein: and now Translated into English, for the Common Benefite of the Seamen of England (translation of the original Dutch by Simon Stevin)
  • 1605: The Safegarde of Saylers, or Great Rutter. Contayning the Courses, Dystances, Deapths, Soundings, Flouds and Ebbes, with the Marks for the Entring of Sundry Harboroughs both of England, Fraunce, Spaine, Ireland. Flaunders, and the Soundes of Denmarke, with other Necessarie Rules of Common Nauigation. Translated out of Dutch ... by Robert Norman ... Newly corrected and augmented by E W (as editor)
  • 1616: A Description of the Admirable Table of Logarithmes: With a Declaration of the ... Use thereof. Invented and Published in Latin by ... L. John Nepair ... and Translated into English by ... Edward Wright. With an Addition of an Instrumentall Table to Finde the Part Proportionall, Invented by the Translator, and Described in the Ende of the Booke by Henry Brigs, etc (as translator from the Latin)
  • Later editions and reprints:
    • 1618: A Description of the Admirable Table of Logarithmes: With a Declaration of the Most Plentifull, Easie and Speedy Use thereof in both kinds of Trigonometry, as also in all Mathematicall Calculations. Invented and Published inn Latine by that Honourable Lord John Nepair, Baron of Marchiston, and translated into English by the late learned and famous Mathematician, Edward Wright. With an Addition of the Instrumentall Table to finde the part of the Proportionall, intended by the Translator, and described in the end of the Booke by Henrie Brigs Geometry-reader at Gresham House in London. All Perused and Approved by the Authour, and Published since the Death of the Translator. Whereunto is added New Rules for the Ease of the Student

Book titles were longer in those days.