DIGGES (Thomas)

, only son of Leonard Digges, after a liberal education from his tenderest years, went and studied for some time at Oxford; and by the improvements he made there, and the subsequent instructions of his learned father, became one of the best mathematicians of his age. When queen Elizabeth sent some forces to assist the oppressed inhabitants of the Netherlands, Mr. Digges was appointed muster-master general of them; by which he became well skilled in military affairs; as his writings afterward shewed. He died in 1595.

Mr. Digges, beside revising, correcting, and enlarg- ing some pieces of his father's, already mentioned, wrote and published the following learned works himself: viz, 1. Alæ sive Scalæ Mathematicæ: or Mathematical Wings or Ladders, 1573, 4to. A book which contains several demonstrations for finding the parallaxes of any comet, or other celestial body, with a correction of the errors in the use of the radius astronomicus.—2. An Arithmetical Military Treatise, containing so much of Arithmetic as is necessary towards military disciplinc, 1579, 4to.—3. A Geometrical Treatise, named Stratioticos, requisite for the perfection of Soldiers, 1579, 4to. This was begun by his father, but finished by himself. They were both reprinted together in 1590, with several additions and amendments, under this title: “An Arithmetical Warlike Treatise, named Stratioticos, compendiously teaching the science of Numbers, as well in Fractions as Integers, and so much of the Rules and Equations Algebraical, and art of Numbers Cossical, as are requisite for the profession of a souldier. Together with the Moderne militaire discipline, offices, lawes, and orders in every well-governed campe and armie, inviolably to be observed.” At the end of this work there are two pieces; the first, “A briefe and true report of the proceedings of the Earle of Leycester, for the reliefe of the towne of Sluce, from his arrival at Vlishing, about the end of June 1587, untill the surrendrie thereof 26 Julii next ensuing. Whereby it shall plainelie appear, his excellencie was not in anie fault for the losse of that towne:” the second, “A briefe discourse what orders were best for repulsing of foraine forces, if at any time they should invade us by sea in Kent, or elsewhere.”—4. A perfect Description of the Celestial Orbs, according to the most ancient doctrine of the Pythagoreans, &c. This was placed at the end of his father's “Prognostication Everlasting, &c.” printed in 1592, 4to.—5. A humble Motive for Association to maintain the religion established, 1601, 8vo. To which is added, his Letter to the same purpose to the archbishops and bishops of England.—6. England's Defence: or, A Treatise concerning Invasion. This is a tract of the same nature with that printed at the end of his Stratioticos, and called, A briefe Discourse, &c. It was written in 1599, but not published till 1686.—7. A Letter printed before Dr. John Dee's Parallaticæ Commentationis praxeosque nucleus quidam, 1573, 4to.—Beside these, and his Nova Corpora, he left several mathematical treatises ready for the press; which, by reason of lawsuits and other avocations, he was hindered from publishing.

If our author was great in himself, he was not less so in his son, Sir Dudley Digges, so celebrated as a politician and elegant writer.

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Entry taken from A Mathematical and Philosophical Dictionary, by Charles Hutton, 1796.

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DIGBY (Sir Kenelm)
DIGGES (Leonard)
* DIGGES (Thomas)