Maclaurin, Colin (məklôrˈĭn, –lärˈĭn) [key], 1698–1746, Scottish mathematician and natural philosopher, one of the greatest mathematicians of his time. He was professor at Aberdeen and from 1725 at the Univ. of Edinburgh. He was an authority on fluxions (as Newton's version of the calculus was called), on Newton's gravitational theory, and on geometry. He also contributed to astronomy, cartography, and did actuarial computation for insurance companies. His writings include Geometria organica (1720) and A Treatise on Fluxions (1742).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
See more Encyclopedia articles on: Mathematics: Biographies