A History of Parametric Statistical Inference from Bernoulli to Fisher, 1713–1935

  • Anders Hald

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-XVI
  2. The Three Revolutions in Parametric Statistical Inference

  3. Binomial Statistical Inference

  4. Statistical Inference by Inverse Probability

  5. The Central Limit Theorem and Linear Minimum Variance Estimation by Laplace and Gauss

  6. Error Theory. Skew Distributions. Correlation. Sampling Distributions

  7. The Fisherian Revolution, 1912–1935

  8. Back Matter
    Pages 199-223

About this book


This is a history of parametric statistical inference, written by one of the most important historians of statistics of the 20th century, Anders Hald. This book can be viewed as a follow-up to his two most recent books, although this current text is much more streamlined and contains new analysis of many ideas and developments. And unlike his other books, which were encyclopedic by nature, this book can be used for a course on the topic, the only prerequisites being a basic course in probability and statistics.

The book is divided into five main sections:

* Binomial statistical inference;

* Statistical inference by inverse probability;

* The central limit theorem and linear minimum variance estimation by Laplace and Gauss;

* Error theory, skew distributions, correlation, sampling distributions;

* The Fisherian Revolution, 1912-1935.

Throughout each of the chapters, the author provides lively biographical sketches of many of the main characters, including Laplace, Gauss, Edgeworth, Fisher, and Karl Pearson. He also examines the roles played by DeMoivre, James Bernoulli, and Lagrange, and he provides an accessible exposition of the work of R.A. Fisher.

This book will be of interest to statisticians, mathematicians, undergraduate and graduate students, and historians of science.


Fitting History of Mathematics Likelihood Normal distribution Variance analysis of variance best fit correlation

Authors and affiliations

  • Anders Hald
    • 1
  1. 1.University of CopenhagenVirumDenmark

Bibliographic information