List of European inventors
Eugene over at The Volokh Conspiracy is putting together a list of European inventors. As I was noticing Mr. Mercator, I saw him sitting in this list quite alone and solitary --him being the only one who had a map to get there in the first place probably (sorry ...), so I took the liberty to mail some other Belgians to Mr. Volokh. Here's my list:
* Adolphe Sax, the man who invented the instrument with the same name.
* Leo Bakeland, a Belgian-born American responsible for the discovery of "Bakelite" , the first artificial "plastic".
* Andreas Vesalius, ringing in the start of modern Human Anatomy.
* Jean Joseph Etienne Lenoir, inventor of the internal-combustion engine (better known as "a car" in our days).
Some more inventors (Belgians at least) here and here.
If any of my five local readers (pun intended) is able to come up with some more names, don't hold yourselves back I'd say ... . However, do take into account Eugene's criteria as mentioned in his post.