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Mathematical Treasure: Waring’s Meditationes Analyticae

Frank J. Swetz (The Pennsylvania State University)

Edward Waring (1736-1798) was an English mathematician remembered for his work in number theory, algebra, and analysis. He wrote several works, including Miscellanea Analytica (1762) and Meditationes Algebraicae (1770). He had distributed a preliminary version of Miscellanea Analytica in 1759 to demonstrate his mathematical ability to assume the Lucasian Chair of Mathematics at Cambridge University, which he did in 1760 at the age of 23.

The title page of the 1785 edition of Waring’s Meditationes Analyticae, first published in 1773, is shown below.

The opening discussion concerns Newton’s theory of fluxions.

The table of illustrative figures for Meditationes Analytica:

The images above were obtained through the courtesy of the Peabody Library, Johns Hopkins University.

Index to Mathematical Treasures

Frank J. Swetz (The Pennsylvania State University), "Mathematical Treasure: Waring’s Meditationes Analyticae," Convergence (August 2016)