|Thomas Bayes (circa 1702-1761)|
Other than his ministry, Bayes
was credited with writing an anonymous paper supporting Isaac Newton’s
work on fluxions, which was attacked by George Berkeley in a paper
called The Analyst: Or a Discourse
addressed to an Infidel Mathematician.
This work was a major factor that may have helped secure his
election to the Royal Society. The
Royal Society felt he had demonstrated a vast understanding and
knowledge of geometry, mathematics, and philosophy.
After Bayes’ death in
1761, a family friend, Reverend Richard Price, found another
mathematical work written by Bayes, which supported Bayes’
understanding of probability. This
work explored the Stirling-De Moivre Theorem, which involves series
expansions. Price and
others found his reasoning and proof quite insightful.
In 1764, Bayes’ work was published in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society.
Picture reproduced from MacTutor History of Mathematics archive with permission.