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This free course looks at Scotsman John Napier, best known to for his treatise on Protestant religion. However, it was his interest in a completely different subject that radically altered the course of mathematics. After 40 years of dabbling in maths, he revealed his table of logarithms in the early 17th century.
After studying this course, you should be able to:
- understand the significance of John Napier's contributions to mathematics
- give examples of the factors that influenced Napier's mathematical work.
- Current section: Introduction
- Learning outcomes
- 1 Excellent Brief Rules
- Keep on learning
Study this free course
Enrol to access the full course, get recognition for the skills you learn, track your progress and on completion gain a statement of participation to demonstrate your learning to others. Make your learning visible!
This course provides an overview of John Napier and his work on logarithms. It discusses his approach to this lasting invention and looks at the key players who worked with him, including Briggs, Wright and Kepler.
This OpenLearn course provides a sample of Level 2 study in
This free course includes adapted extracts from an Open University course which is no longer available to new students. If you found this interesting you could explore more free Mathematics courses or view the range of currently available OU Mathematics courses.
Copyright & revisions
Originally published: Friday, 8th July 2011
Last updated on: Tuesday, 15th March 2016
- Creative-Commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence. However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions. Full details can be found in the Acknowledgements and our FAQs section.
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