'William Gilbert of Colchester, Physician of London. On the Loadstone and Magnetic Bodies, and on the Great Magnet the Earth'
By Gilbert William, Fleury Mottelay (Translator)
William Gilbert (May 1544 – 30 November 1603), also known as Gilberd, was an English physician, physicist and natural philosopher. He passionately rejected both the prevailing Aristotelian philosophy and the Scholastic method of university teaching. He is remembered today largely for his book De Magnete (1600), and is credited as one of the originators of the term "electricity". He is regarded by some as the father of electrical engineering or electricity and magnetism.
While today he is generally referred to as William Gilbert, he also went under the name of William Gilberd. The latter was used in both his and his father's epitaphs, in the records of the town of Colchester, in the Biographical Memoir that appears in De Magnete, and in the name of The Gilberd School in Colchester. A unit of magnetomotive force, also known as magnetic potential, was named the Gilbert in his honour.