Briggs pointed out in his lectures at Gresham College that it would be more convenient that o should stand for the logarithm of the whole sine as in the Descriptio, but that the logarithm of the tenth part of the whole sine should be Io,000,000,000.

The fact that when the base is io the mantissa of the logarithm is independent of the position of the decimal point in the number affords the chief reason for the choice of io as base.

The only other mathematician besides Napier who grasped the idea on which the use of logarithm depends and applied it to the construction of a table is Justus Byrgius (Jobst Biirgi), whose work Arithmetische and geometrische Progress-Tabulen ...

View more

The name logarithm is derived from the words X6 7 wv hp426s, the number of the ratios, and the way of regarding a logarithm which justifies the name may be explained as follows.

He obtained the logarithm of this quantity, viz.

By means of these tables and of a factor table we may very readily obtain the Briggian logarithm of a number to 61 or a less number of places or of its hyperbolic logarithm to 48 or a less number of places in the following manner.

He generalized Weber's law in the form that sensation generally increases in intensity as the stimulus increases by a constant function of the previous stimulus; or increases in an arithmetical progression as the stimulus increases in a geometrical ratio; or increases by addition of the same amount as the stimulus increases by the same multiple; or increases as the logarithm of the stimulus.

In tables of logarithms of numbers to base io the mantissa only is in general tabulated, as the characteristic of the logarithm of a number can always be written down at sight, the rule being that, if the number is greater than unity, the characteristic is less by unity than the number of digits in the integral portion of it, and that if the number is less than unity the characteristic is negative, and is greater by unity than the number of ciphers between the decimal point and the first significant figure.

The calculation of a logarithm can be performed by successive divisions; evolution requires special methods.

Taking as an example the calculation of the Briggian logarithm of the number 43,867, whose hyperbolic logarithm has been calculated above, we multiply it by 3, giving 131,601, and find by Gray's process that the factors of 1.31601 are (I) 1.316 (5) I.