British maker of scientific instruments, famous throughout Europe for the high quality of his astronomical, nautical, and surveying tools. Born in October 1735, Ramsden began his working life as an apprentice in the cloth trade in his native Halifax, Yorkshire, studying mathematics and science in his spare time. When he was about twenty he moved to London and in 1756 apprenticed himself to Mark Burton, a mathematical instrument maker. By 1763 he had set up his own workshop in London and quickly gained a reputation for excellent instruments. In 1766 he married Sarah Dollond, daughter of the optician John Dollond.
From The Oxford Encyclopedia of Maritime History in Oxford Reference.
Subjects: Maritime History.