Josiah Wedgwood invented the pyrometer for measuring the extremely high temperatures in a kiln, enabling his factory to efficiently regulate pottery quality during firing. He was also the first English potter to industrialize his business, eventually mass producing his famous Wedgwood china.
Wedgwood was born into a family of potters. When his brother refused to make him a partner in the family business, he went to work for other potters, ultimately partnering with Thomas Whieldon. His many inventions and innovations created a new, simpler pottery style, and his industrial innovations made his pottery relatively inexpensive to produce. His invention of the pyrometer led to his election as a member of the Royal Society in 1783. Wedgwood is also known as one of the early British abolitionists and as the grandfather of evolutionary biologist Charles Darwin.