Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Richardson, John (fl.1790)

RICHARDSON, JOHN (fl. 1790), writer on brewing, chiefly lived at Hull, although he had studied brewing in many other parts of the kingdom. He is the first writer to treat scientifically of the processes of brewing. His earliest work consisted of an ‘Advertisement of Proposals for teaching his Method of brewing Porter and Pale Beers.’ This appeared in 1777. He next issued ‘Statical Estimates of the Materials of Brewing; or a Treatise on the Application and Use of the Saccharometer’ (London, 1784); and lastly, ‘The Principles of Brewing’ (Hull, 1798, 8vo; 3rd edit. York, 1805). In these works he dwells on the utility of the thermometer and saccharometer in brewing, instead of determining quantities by rule of thumb. He was the first to bring to the knowledge of brewers the use and value of the saccharometer, as Combrune in 1762 had first recommended the thermometer.

[Richardson's Works; art. ‘Brewing’ in Encycl. Brit. by S. A. Wyllie.]

M. G. W.