“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.