Mathematician:Nicholas Mercator

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German mathematician who designed a marine chronometer for Charles $\text {II}$ of England, and designed and constructed the fountains at the Palace of Versailles.

Known for the Newton-Mercator Series.

Not to be confused with Gerardus Mercator, the cartographer.




  • Born: 1619 or 1620 in Eutin, Holstein, Holy Roman Empire (now Germany)
  • Died: 14 January 1687 in Paris, France


Gregory's Constant, for either James Gregory or Grégoire de Saint-Vincent
the alternating harmonic series

Results named for Nicholas Mercator can be found here.

Definitions of concepts named for Nicholas Mercator can be found here.


  • 1651: Trigonometria sphaericorum logarithmica
  • 1651: Cosmographia
  • 1651: Astronomica sphaerica
  • 1653: Rationes mathematicae subductae
  • 1653: De emendatione annua diatribae duae
  • 1664: Hypothesis astronomica nova
  • 1668: Logarithmotechnia
  • 1676: Institutiones astronomicae (2 volumes)

Also known as

Nicholas Mercator was originally named Niklaus Kauffman (or Kauffmann). He later changed his surname to Mercator, the Latin form of merchant.

Nicholas is variously rendered Nicolaus, Nikolaus or Niklaus.