The Scientific Revolution

Author(s): Lawrence M. Principe


The sixteenth and seventeenth centuries witnessed such fervent investigations of the natural world that the period has been called the 'Scientific Revolution.' New ideas and discoveries not only redefined what human beings believed, knew, and could do, but also forced them to redefine themselves with respect to the strange new worlds revealed by ships and scalpels, telescopes and microscopes, experimentation and contemplation. Driven by religious devotion, by practical need, by the promise of fame and profit, or by the simple desire to know, a broad range of thinkers and workers explored and reconceptualized the world around them. Explanatory systems were made, discarded, and remade by some of the best-known names in the entire history of science - Copernicus, Galileo, Newton - and by many others less recognized but no less important. In this Very Short Introduction Lawrence M. Principe explores the exciting developments in the sciences of the stars (astronomy, astrology, and cosmology), the sciences of earth (geography, geology, hydraulics, pneumatics), the sciences of matter and motion (alchemy, chemistry, kinematics, physics), the sciences of life (medicine, anatomy, biology, zoology), and much more. The story is told from the perspective of the historical characters themselves, emphasizing their background, context, reasoning, and motivations, and dispelling well-worn myths about the history of science.


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Product Information

Introduction: science and natural philosophy; 1. New worlds and old worlds; 2. The connected world; 3. The superlunar world; 4. The sublunar world; 5. The microcosm and the living world; 6. The artificial world; 7. Building a world of science; Conclusion

General Fields

  • : 9780199567416
  • : Oxford University Press
  • : Oxford University Press
  • : 0.138
  • : April 2011
  • : 173mm X 115mm X 10mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : July 2011
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Lawrence M. Principe
  • : c.15 black and white halftones
  • : 168
  • : Paperback