# Mathematician:William Oughtred

## Mathematician

English mathematician credited with the invention of the slide rule.

Also credited with inventing a circular version although precedence for this was disputed with his student Richard Delamain.

Experimented with notations in his famously compact writings, inventing some new symbology which stuck, notably $\times$, $\sin$ and $\cos$.

Among others, he may have been influential in the introduction of the symbol $\pi$ for pi, using an abbreviation for the Greek word for periphery (that is, περιφέρεια).

His invention of $\times$ for multiplication came in for criticism from Leibniz for being too similar to the letter $x$. Leibniz's preference $\cdot$ is now widespread.

English

## History

• Born: 5 March 1574, Eton, Buckinghamshire, England
• Died: 30 June 1660, Albury, Surrey, England

## Sources

but beware of the mistake in the year of birth