Harriot, Thomas

Harriot, Thomas hârˈēət [key], 1560–1621, English mathematician and astronomer. He was tutor to Sir Walter Raleigh, who sent him in 1585 to Virginia as surveyor with Sir Richard Grenville. Returning to England, Harriot wrote A Brief and True Report of the New Found Land of Virginia (1588), one of the earliest known large-scale statistical surveys. He made valuable contributions to algebra, introducing new symbols and notation. His Artis analyticae praxis appeared in 1631.

See biography by M. Rukeyser (1971).

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