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Having Refused to Support Babbage, the British Government Pays for a Difference Engine Produced in Sweden

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Scheutz Difference Engine No. 3

Long after refusing to fund the completion of Babbage’s Difference Engine No. 1, and long after refusing to fund construction of his Analytical Engine, the British government paid for the construction of the Scheutzes' third difference engine. In 1859 medical statistician William Farr first used the machine to calculate and set type for a table for Farr's paper, published in Philosophical Transactions, “On the Construction of Life-Tables, Illustrated by a New Life-Table of the Healthy Districts of England.”  Farr read this paper to the Royal Society on April 7, 1859.

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