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History of Science Sources


Chemistry, physics, mineralogy, astronomy, mathematics


Ca. 1,700 books

Scope and content

Michael Faraday, The chemical history of a candle (HISTORY OF SCIENCE SOURCES C FAR)

This collection is dedicated to the History of Science. It is especially strong on the physical sciences, including chemistry and physics, mineralogy, astronomy and mathematics, but it also contains works on such diverse subjects as cartography and navigation, the early history of aeronautics, wireless telegraphy and submarine cables, and the properties of mineral water. Academic staples such as manuals, textbooks and dictionaries are present, as are the major works of prominent scientists.

The publication dates range from 1630 to 1982. The collection includes early editions of Newton's works and the first edition of Joseph Priestly's The History and Present State of Electricity (1767). There are mathematical works by Gravesande, Boole and Lacriox, works on chemistry by Berzelius, Lavoisier, Sir Humphrey Davy and his protegé Michael Faraday, and works by the physicists J. Clark Maxwell, Max Planck and Ernest Rutherford. Charles Babbage, who designed the first computer, is represented, as is Marie Curie.


The core of the collection consists of the libraries of two former Professors of Chemistry: George Fownes (1815-49), who bequeathed his works, and Thomas Graham (1805-69), whose library was donated by his nephew J. C. Graham in 1879. There are contributions from other former UCL Professors including Nobel Prize Winner William Ramsay, Robert Edmund Grant, Augustus de Morgan, Karl and Egon S. Pearson, G. C. Foster, Charles Brooke, M. J. M. Hill and William Sharpey.


The collection is fully catalogued. To browse the records for the printed material, conduct a shelfmark search for HISTORY OF SCIENCE SOURCES on Explore.