History of Statistics

History of statistics said to start around 1749, though there have been changes and interpretations of what the word statistics means. In the beginning statistics related to the information of states. But later it include all collection of information of all types. Later it meant, the collection of information and interpretation.

Now the term mathematical statistics mostly refer models of probability and theory of probability.

Statistics is not a areana of mathematics, but an independent mathematical science like operation research and computer science.


In German statistik first introduced by Gottfried Achenwall(1749) denoted to refer the analysis of the data collected about the political states of different countries. The word statistics have been derived from Latin word "Status" or the Italian word "Statista" meaning the political states of the Government. The rulers and Kings need to know about the information about the land, agriculture, commerce, population and many other fields. So application of statistics has been used by them in limited manner.

In 1602 Shakespeare used the word statist in one of his drama.

During the 18th century, the word "statistics" was used by English writers in their work. By 18th century, it was understood that the subjects 'probability and statistics' are closely related.

Bernoulli(Jakob and Daniel), Abraham de Moivre, Bayes, Laplace were some known mathematician who contributed for statistics also.

Gauss, Boltzmann, Galton and Pearson were some important statisticians who provided their contribution in the 19th century.

At the beginning of 20th century William S Gosset developed a method for decision making based on small sets. Abraham Wald, C R Rao, Savage and Tukey were some of the statisticians of 20th century.

Many statisticians are developing new methods in statistics now. Computer is a major factor in modern statistics. So that much bigger sets can be assembled and analyzed. Much more complex methods can be used

Basic statistics

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