Cocker, Edward

, a name almost proverbial in the schools of arithmetic, was a very ingenious penman and engraver, and born, probably in London, in 163f. He became deservedly reckoned among the improvers of the arts of writing and arithmetic, having published no less | than fourteen copy-books, engraved by his own hand. Some of his calligraphical pieces, which were done on silver plates, have a neatness and delicacy superior to the rest. Mr Evelyn mentions Cocker, Gery, Gething, and Billingsley, as comparable to the Italian masters both for letters and flourishes. His Vulgar Arithmetic has been often printed, first in 1677, a fortieth edition in 1723, and often since. His Decimal Arithmetic appeared in 1695, but has been less popular. He also compiled a small dictionary, and a book of sentences for writing, called Cocker’s Morals. He died in 1677, and his two books on arithmetic were published from his Mss. after his death. 1


Massey’s Origin and Progress of Letters, a prolix but somewhat curious article.