The Foundations of Newton's Alchemy

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CUP Archive, 29 avr. 1983 - 300 pages
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Sir Isaac Newton left at his death a large collection of papers on alchemy, mostly in his own handwriting; the importance of this legacy has been debated ever since. When it first appeared, Professor Dobb's detailed analysis of the foundations of Newton's alchemical pursuits further stimulated interest in the subject by firmly establishing the importance of alchemy in Newton's thought. This book sets the foundations of Newton's alchemy in their historical context in Restoration England. It is shown that alchemical modes of thought and particularly those of a Neoplatonic kind, were quite strong in many of those who provided the dynamism for the scientific revolution of the seventeenth century and that these modes of thought had important relationships with general movements for reform in the same period: reform of religion, philosophy, learning, society and of man himself. Newton's alchemy is thus seen as a critical link between Renaissance Hermeticism and the rational chemistry and mechanics of the eighteenth century.
 

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Table des matières

The Hunting of the Greene Lyon
1
Conceptual Background for SeventeenthCentury Alchemy
25
a Few of its Internal
48
Chemistry and Alchemy at Cambridge
93
166875
126
Newtons Integration of Alchemy and Mechanism
194
Epilogue
233
Newtons Essay on the Preparation of Star
249
A Suggested Periodization for Newtons
256
Index
287
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