Record

Authorised form of nameRobins; Benjamin (1707 - 1751)
Dates1707 - 1751
NationalityBritish
Place of birthBath, Somerset, England
Date of birth1707
Place of deathFort St David, Cuddalore, Madras, India
Date of death29 July 1751
OccupationTeacher; Engineer; Author
Research fieldMathematics
Military engineering
ActivityCareer:
Came to London at the suggestion of Henry Pemberton (FRS 1720) and taught mathematics to private pupils; soon abandoned his Quaker faith; travelled in Flanders to study the fortifications there; engaged in civil and military engineering; invented the ballistic pendulum, a device for measuring the velocity of a projectile; invited by the Prince of Orange to fortify Bergen-op-Zoom, but it fell to the French before he had started work; Engineer-General to the HEIC (1749-death)
Membership categoryFellow
Date of election09/11/1727
ProposerSylvanus Bevan
Royal Society activityMedals and prizes:
Copley Medal 1745
RelationshipsSon of John Robins, a Quaker; unmarried
SourcesSources:
Bulloch's Roll; DNB; DSB
References:
Geoffrey Cantor, 'Quakers in the Royal Society, 1660-1750' in NR 1997 vol 51 pp 175-193.
W Johnson, 'Benjamin Robins During 1739-1742: "Called to a Publick Employment … A Very Honorable Post"' in NR 1994 vol 48 pp 31-42
W Johnson, 'Benjamin Robins, FRS (1707-1751): New Details of His Life' in NR 1992 vol 46 pp 235-252
J A D Ackroyd, 'Sir George Cayley, the father of aeronautics, Part 1. The invention of the aeroplane' NR 2002 vol 56 pp 167-181
J A D Ackroyd, 'Sir George Cayley, the father of aeronautics. Part 2. Cayley's aeroplanes' in NR 2002 vol 56 pp 333-348
Gentleman's Magazine' 1752, p92 (obituary)
London Magazine 1752, p92 (a description of his experiments with rockets by John Ellicott FRS is on p22)
A McConnell, 'All guns blazing: Collected works on Benjamin Robins and Charles Hutton, by W Johnson' in NR 2004 vol 58 pp 102-103
William Johnson FRS 'Collected works on Benjamin Robins and Charles Hutton' 2001 Phoenix Publishing House pvt Ltd New Delhi)
Virtual International Authority Filehttp://viaf.org/viaf/73887860
Royal Society codeNA2673
Archives associated with this Fellow
Reference numberTitleDate
MS/46A commonplace book of Benjamin Robins
MM/6/76Letter from E Sparke to Benjamin Robins10 January 1744
MM/6/80Letter from E Sparke to Benjamin Robins11 October 1746
MM/6/78Letter from E Sparke to Benjamin Robins16 January 1745
MM/6/77Letter from E Sparke to Benjamin Robins14 January 1745
RBO/13/68'An account of a Treatise of the Abbe de Molieres intitled: a Physical and mechanical Explication of the Percussion of elastic Bodies' by Benjamin Robins1728
RBO/16/61Meteorological observations from Hudson's Bay by Captain Christopher Middleton in his letter to Benjamin Robins1731
L&P/1/179aPaper 'An account of his book 'New principles of gunnery'' by Benjamin Robins1743
MS/39Papers of Benjamin Robins1725-1750
MM/6/79Letter from E Sparke, London, to Benjamin Robins6 September 1746
MS/130Papers on ballistics by Benjamin Robins1745-1750
MS/130/1Notebook containing 'An account of the experiments relating to the resistance of the air...', by Benjamin Robins1747-1750
CLP/9ii/22Paper, 'A new and exact table collected from severall observations taken from the year 1721 to 1729 in 9 voyages to Hudson Bay North America by Capt C Middleton shewing the variation of the compass according to the lattitudes and longitudes under mentioned accounting the longitude from the meridian of London' by C [Christopher] Middleton[1731]
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