Chemistry touches every aspects of our life, but we are largely ignorant of it. A general reader has access to many popular books in the various areas of physics and astornomy, but in the area of chemistry there is virtually no accessible material. One common perception is that chemistry is a difficult subject, which is partially true.
"Great advances in human history have often rested on and prompted progress in chemistry. The exploitation of fire, the development of pigments, and the discovery that metals could be smelted and worked laid the foundations of civilization. The search for better tools and weapons drove metallurgy, and the need for medicines and perfumes lay behind the first laboratories. This book traces a story of exploration and discovery, from the earliest applications of chemistry by our ancient forebears. For more than 1,000 years, alchemists pursued the transformation of matter until the advent of modern chemistry in the 17th century set us on the path to the complex science of today. Topics include: prechemistry since prehistory; alchemy and the transmutation of metals; the rise of the scientific method; identifying the chemical elements; understanding gases; the nature of the atom; organic chemistry; chemical analysis."--
Classic popular account of the great chemists Trevisan, Paracelsus, Avogadro, Mendeléeff, the Curies, Thomson, Lavoisier, and others, up to A-bomb research and recent work with subatomic particles. 20 illustrations.
'The importance of the end in view prompted me to undertake all this work, which seemed to me destined to bring about a revolution in physics and chemistry.' Antoine Lavoisier, 1773 Great advances in human history have often rested on and prompted progress in chemistry. The exploitation of fire, the development of pigments, and the discovery that metals could be smelted and worked laid the foundations of civilization. The search for better tools and weapons drove metallurgy, and the need for medicines and perfumes lay behind the first laboratories. This book traces a story of exploration and discovery, from the earliest applications of chemistry by our ancient forebears. For more than 1,000 years, alchemists pursued the transformation of matter until the advent of modern chemistry in the 17th century set us on the path to the complex science of today. Topics include: • prechemistry since prehistory • alchemy and the transmutation of metals • the rise of the scientific method • identifying the chemical elements • understanding gases • the nature of the atom • organic chemistry • chemical analysis Beautifully illustrated throughout
This book is written as a result of a personal conviction of the value of incorporating historical material into the teaching of chemistry, both at school and undergraduate level. Indeed, it is highly desirable that an undergraduate course in chemistry incorporates a separate module on the history of chemistry. This book is therefore aimed at teachers and students of chemistry, and it will also appeal to practising chemists. While the last 25 years has seen the appearance of a large number of specialist scholarly publications on the history of chemistry, there has been little written in the way of an introductory overview of the subject. This book fills that gap. It incorporates some of the results of recent research, and the text is illustrated throughout. Clearly, a book of this length has to be highly selective in its coverage, but it describes the themes and personalities which in the author's opinion have been of greatest importance in the development of the subject. The famous American historian of science, Henry Guerlac, wrote: 'It is the central business of the historian of science to reconstruct the story of the acquisition of this knowledge and the refinement of its method or methods, and-perhaps above all-to study science as a human activity and learn how it arose, how it developed and expanded, and how it has influenced or been influenced by man's material, intellectual, and even spiritual aspirations' (Guerlac, 1977). This book attempts to describe the development of chemistry in these terms.
The brief explains in simple terms the essentials of polymer chemistry and how polymers came to be discovered by pioneers in this field. It relates the many uses of polymers, including those not widely recognised by the lay person. The chemistry of polymerisation and the influence of chemical structure and additives on properties are described. Ethical issues are considered, especially in the context of huge tonnages of plastics. Finally short paragraphs on more than 30 common polymers are listed chronologically with chemical structures, properties and applications. It will appeal to those with connections to or within the plastics, rubber and textile industries, science students, members of other science disciplines using polymers, as well as people just curious to know about everyday plastics.
Originally published under the title The Story of Early Chemistry. Tells the story of the development of chemical knowledge and science, from the beginning of time to the end of the 18th century.
From the use of metals by prehistoric man to the alchemical experiments of medieval and renaissance man to the complex chemical skills of contemporary man, Asimov traces the development of this building block of our technological world.
Starting with a mixture of iron filings and sulphur, Uncle Paul awakens in his young nephews an eagerness to learn more about the properties of the elements. Through a series of carefully-devised experiments and conversations about the experiments, he leads the boys to an understanding of some of the basic principles of chemistry. Excellent as a follow-on to "The Story Book ofScience" and "The Secret of Everyday Things" by the same author. Suitable for ages 11 and up.
Transforming Matter provides an accessible and clearly written introduction to the history of chemistry, telling the story of how the discipline has developed over the years.
Praise for From Alchemy to Chemistry in Picture and Story "The timeline from alchemy to chemistry contains some of the most mystifying ideas and images that humans have ever devised. Arthur Greenberg shows us this wonderful world in a unique and highly readable book." —Dr. John Emsley, author of The Elements of Murder: A History of Poison "Art Greenberg takes us, through text and lovingly selected images, on a 'magical mystery tour' of the chemical universe. No matter what page you open, there is a chemical story worth telling." —Dr. Roald Hoffmann, Nobel Laureate and coauthor of Chemistry Imagined "Chemistry has perhaps the most intricate, most fascinating, and certainly most romantic history of all the sciences. Arthur Greenberg's essays-delightful, learned, quirky, highly personal, and richly illustrated with contemporary drawings (many of great rarity and beauty)-provide a kaleidoscope of intellectual landscapes, bringing the experiments, the ideas, and the human figures of chemistry's past intensely alive." —Dr. Oliver Sacks, author of Awakenings From Alchemy to Chemistry in Picture and Story takes you on an illustrated tour of chemistry's fascinating history, from its early focus on the spiritual relationship between man and nature to some of today's most cutting-edge applications. Drawing from rare publications and artwork that span over five centuries, the book contains nearly 200 essays and over 350 illustrations-including 24 in full color-that tell the engaging story of the development of this fundamental science and its connection with human history. Join Arthur Greenberg as he combines the "best of the best" from his previous works (as well as several new essays) to paint a colorful picture of chemistry's remarkable origins!
"One of the best short surveys of the history of chemistry I know of. I have always found it useful." — Marshall Clagett, University of Wisconsin. This classic survey of the history of chemistry — one of the most complete short histories available — is ideal for general readers and undergraduates. Praised for its balanced coverage of both physical and organic chemistry, Professor Partington’s well-known text explores a variety of topics. The first four chapters examine the origins of chemistry, alchemy, applied chemistry, and early medical chemistry. Subsequent sections consider early studies of combustion and the nature of the atmosphere, the discovery of gases (including Priestley’s experiments on air and his discovery of oxygen), Lavoisier and the foundation of modern chemistry, laws of combining proportions and atomic theory; Davy, Berzelius, and electrochemical theory; the beginnings and development of organic chemistry, the theory of valency, history of physical chemistry, periodic law, and the structure of the atom. Sections on Indian and Chinese science have been rewritten in light of recent investigations. The author has also incorporated additional material relating to Mayow and Lavoisier and has added an entirely new section on advances in chemistry. Most of the information in this volume has been drawn from original sources. A selection of references and a short bibliography of about 100 items are given to assist readers seeking further information. Lucid and authoritative, A Short History of Chemistry contains several useful summaries and more than 100 illustrations, including portraits and reproductions from scarce works. The text is valuable both for reading and as a work of reference.