Napier's rods, 1671-1700.

Image number: 10302589

Napier's rods, 1671-1700.

John Napier (1550-1617), discoverer of logarithms, created the popular calculating tool known as Napier's rods or bones. Napier's rods reduced muliplication to a sequence of simple additions; division and square roots could also be achieved. This instrument consists of a wooden box containing ten rotating cylinders each of which bears the numbers '0 times' to '9 times'.

Image number:
Science Museum/Science & Society Picture Library
Date taken:
29 October 2003 20:16
Image rights:
Science Museum

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