Quetelet, Lambert Adolphe Jacques


Adolphe Quetelet (1796–1874), a Belgian mathematician and astronomer whose studies of ‘social physics’ (physique sociale) broadened the use of statistics from error correction in astronomy to the social and life sciences.

Keywords: statistics; population statistics; psychology; Herbert Spencer; obesity

Further Reading

Gillispie CC (ed.) (1970) Dictionary of Scientific Biography. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons.

Hankins FH (1908) Quetelet as a Statistician. New York: Columbia University.

Porter TM (1986) The Rise of Statistical Thinking 1820–1900. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Quetelet A (1835) Sur l'homme et le développement de ses facultés, essai d'une physique sociale, 2 vols. Paris: Bachelier. Trans. Knox R (1842) reprinted with Introduction by Diamond S (1969) A treatise on man and the development of his faculties. Gainesville, FL: Scholars’ Facsimiles & Reprints.

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Power, HJ(Dec 2007) Quetelet, Lambert Adolphe Jacques. In: eLS. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester. http://www.els.net [doi: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0002461]