An Interactive Annotated World Bibliography of Printed and Digital Works in the History of Medicine and the Life Sciences from Circa 2000 BCE to 2022 by Fielding H. Garrison (1870-1935), Leslie T. Morton (1907-2004), and Jeremy M. Norman (1945- ) Traditionally Known as “Garrison-Morton”

15871 entries, 13811 authors and 1928 subjects. Updated: March 19, 2023

GOMPERTZ, Benjamin

1 entries
  • 8375

On the nature of the function expressive of the law of human mortality, and on a new mode of determining the value of life contingencies.

Phil. Trans., 115, 513-583., 1825.

Gompertz function. "Gompertz showed that over much of the adult human lifespan, age-specific mortality rates increased in an exponential manner. Gompertz's work played an important role in shaping the emerging statistical science that underpins the pricing of life insurance and annuities. Latterly, as the subject of ageing itself became the focus of scientific study, the Gompertz model provided a powerful stimulus to examine the patterns of death across the life course not only in humans but also in a wide range of other organisms. The idea that the Gompertz model might constitute a fundamental ‘law of mortality’ has given way to the recognition that other patterns exist, not only across the species range but also in advanced old age. Nevertheless, Gompertz's way of representing the function expressive of the pattern of much of adult mortality retains considerable relevance for studying the factors that influence the intrinsic biology of ageing" (, accessed 1-2017). Digital facsimile of the 1825 paper from the Royal Society at this link.

Subjects: COMPUTING/MATHEMATICS in Medicine & Biology, DEMOGRAPHY / Population: Medical Statistics, GERIATRICS / Gerontology / Aging