# Mathematician:Nicholas Mercator

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## Mathematician

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.

## Nationality

German

## History

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

## Theorems

- Mercator's Constant, also known as:

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

- Newton-Mercator Series (independently of Isaac Newton, also discovered by Grégoire de Saint-Vincent)

Results named for **Nicholas Mercator** can be found here.

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

## Publications

- 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**.

## Sources

- John J. O'Connor and Edmund F. Robertson: "Nicholas Mercator": MacTutor History of Mathematics archive

- 2008: David Nelson:
*The Penguin Dictionary of Mathematics*(4th ed.) ... (previous) ... (next): Entry:**Mercator's series**