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Mendeleyev's Dream: The Quest For the Elements

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Taking a traditional view of intellectual history, Strathern considers the 17th century as the era when the ‘new science’ of chemistry could at last ‘shed its oriental esoteric past. He is scheduled to meet with a group of cheesemakers in a small town some 600 kilometres away and must catch a train.

Misguided from the start and frequently bizarre, alchemy did manage to work out a good many compounds, chemical processes and even some practical applications. The book starts and ends with the story of Dmitri Mendeleev's arrangement of the known elements to form the original periodic table. Change country: -Select- Afghanistan Albania Algeria American Samoa Andorra Angola Anguilla Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Republic Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Brazil British Virgin Islands Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Islands Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Colombia Comoros Cook Islands Costa Rica Cyprus Czech Republic Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast) Democratic Republic of the Congo Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) Fiji Finland France Gabon Republic Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guam Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Honduras Hong Kong Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iraq Ireland Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Laos Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macau Macedonia Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Marshall Islands Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Micronesia Moldova Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands Netherlands Antilles New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norway Oman Pakistan Palau Paraguay Peru Philippines Poland Portugal Puerto Rico Qatar Republic of Croatia Republic of the Congo Romania Rwanda Saint Helena Saint Kitts-Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines San Marino Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Korea Spain Sri Lanka Suriname Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania Thailand Togo Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Vatican City State Vietnam Virgin Islands (U. In this elegant and entertaining book, the award-winning novelist and expositor of difficult ideas, Paul Strathern unravels the history of chemistry through the dramatic quest for the elements. Strathern illuminates all of the major characters, their lives, and their intellectual entanglements in myth, religious dogma, superstition, and the specially persistent influences of alchemy that took chemistry millennia to shed like an emergent butterfly from its chrysalis.I’ve always been interested in the history of sciences, arts and literature so I quickly got a copy of it.

One has to wait patiently till the very last 30 pages of book where finally Mendeleyev reaches the spotlight. It's clearly written with the benefit of hindsight and is selecting the stories in light of what would later prove to be important, even though that direction was unknown at the time. Mendeleyev was an eccentric by any standards, but hardly surprising given the hardships he endured as a child and an impoverished student in the trying times of Czarist Russia. Read more about the condition New: A new, unread, unused book in perfect condition with no missing or damaged pages. Paul Strathern is a Somerset Maugham Award-winning novelist, and his nonfiction works include The Venetians, Death in Florence, The Medici, Mendeleyev's Dream, The Florentines, Empire, and The Borgias, all available from Pegasus Books.

Seller has stated it will dispatch the item within 1 working day upon receipt of cleared payment - opens in a new window or tab . On a wintry February day in 1869 the great Russian chemist Dmitri Mendeleyev fell asleep at his desk after a marathon game of patience. I've read critiques of this book complaining that it gives the false impression that science proceeds in a straight line by omitting a lot of context around the historic episodes he presents, but I didn't take it that way at all. The author's fascinating accounts of the peculiar early-modern "scientists" really closer to the medieval alchemists Paracelsus and Giordano Bruno (the latter Galileo's unlucky predecessor before the Inquisition) show how quackery can combine with real insight to make notable advances in science.

Boyles Sceptial Chemist, with his concept of elements as particles, was one of the first coherent refutations of the Aristotelian theory and its chokehold on progress.The title of this book is misleading, if from it you assume the book is primarily about Mendeleyev - far from it. Most of the alchemist and scientist names sounded familiar and I remembered most of their contribution thanks to Asimov’s remarkable style: easy-to-read but powerful and engaging as a good novel. Beginning with the origins of alchemy, Strathern brings us through the evolution of science right up to Mendeleev's discovery of the periodic table, along the way emphasizing and acknowledging how the many mistakes and false theories we've held throughout time have simultaneously hindered and also paved the way for future discovery. This idea, once conceived, was quickly developed by Thales’ pupils in Miletus – the philosophers known as the Milesian school.

This, however, does not detract from the amazing story behind the distillation of modern chemistry out of the quagmire of beliefs and false starts - era after era - finally culminating in Mendeleyev's periodic table of the elements and the birth of modern chemistry. The book guides us through the labyrinth of dead ends and discoveries from Thales of Miletus in ancient Greece, through Mendeleyev of mid 19th century Czarist Russia that precipitated the identification and classification of the known elements.

Framing this history is the life-story of the 19th century Russian scientist Dmitri Mendeleyev, who fell asleep at this desk and awoke after dreaming of the Periodic Table - the template upon which modern chemistry is founded, and the formulation of which marked chemistry's coming of age as a science. For example, playwright Christopher Marlowe could hardly have been involved in the Gunpowder Plot, since he was murdered 12 years earlier. After a brief, tantalizing look at Mendeleyev and the challenge he faced, the author leaps off into a scatter-shot history of chemistry, where he spends the bulk of his text.

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