The History of Mathematics

Mathematics After the Middle Ages

Who was considered the first statistician?

English statistician and tradesman John Graunt (1620–1674) was the first true statistician, writing the first book on statistics, although statistics in a simpler form was known long before. Graunt, a draper by profession, was the first to use a compilation of data—in this case the records of bills of mortality, or the records of how and when people died in London from 1604 to 1661. In his Natural and Political Observations Made Upon the Bills of Mortality, he determined certain inclinations, such as more boys were born than girls, women live longer than men, etc. He also developed the first mortality table, which showed how long a person might expect to live after a certain age, something familiar to us all, especially in fields such as insurance and health.


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