Peter Nicholson, British mathematician and architect, 1825.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Engraving by I Cochran after W Derby of Peter Nicholson (1765-1844). Nicholson was devoted to improving the mechanical proceses of building. He formulated rules for finding sections of prisms and cylinders. As well as publishing many works on architecture and mathematics, Nicholson also invented the centrolinead (an instrument used to draw a line through a specific point).