Best remembered for developing the Fahrenheit temperature scale and for inventing the modern mercury thermometer, this Polish-born engineer and physicist also worked as a glassblower and a chemistry teacher.
After pursuing a commerce career in Amsterdam, he lived in Copenhagen, Leipzig, Berlin, and Dresden before ultimately finding employment as a glassblower in The Hague.
Though a native of Danzig, Poland and a member of a family of German heritage, he spent the majority of his life in the Netherlands (then called the Dutch Republic). He was the oldest surviving child of Daniel Fahrenheit and Concordia Schumann (who both died in 1701 after ingesting poisonous mushrooms).
His Fahrenheit scale was ultimately displaced in Europe by the Celsius scale (invented by Anders Celsius), but remained the standard of temperature measurement in the United States.