Cavendish, Henry, & other authors

Alembic Club Reprints I-XVI

  • A handsomely bound set of the first sixteen Alembic Club reprints of seminal papers in the history of chemistry, including works by Henry Cavendish, Joseph Priestley, John Dalton, Robert Hooke, Humphrey Davy, Louis Pasteur, and others. The Alembic Club was founded in 1889 by five members of the Edinburgh University chemistry department with the goal of making "important historical material connected with the history of chemistry within the reach of interested readers" (Dobbin, "The Alembic Club and the History of Chemistry", 1929). Prior to the club's formation, the history of chemistry was not widely taught or published on, and many historical papers remained largely inaccessible. The Alembic Club reprints represented the first time that many of these papers were made available to the educated public rather than specialists. The recipient of this set, B. M. Crowther, went on to a career in science, graduating with a doctorate and joining the staff of the Institute of Electrical Engineers as editor of the publication Physics Abstracts, considered by the wider scientific community to be "one of the science's primary abstracting journals... classifying and indexing everything published in the physical sciences - in all languages". Crowther was also, for a brief period, the boss of Arthur C. Clarke, who worked as an assistant editor on the Physics Abstracts as a young man (McAleer, Arthur C. Clarke)
  • Edinburgh: The Alembic Club, various dates early 20th-century. 16 volumes bound in 2, octavo (180 × 120 mm). Contemporary blue calf prize binding of the Oundle School, spines gilt in compartments, red morocco labels, school crests and double-line rules to boards gilt, marbled endpapers and edges. Prize bookplate to each front pastedown. Just a little rubbing at the extremities, spines and edges of boards faded. An attractively bound set in excellent condition.

Collections: Chemistry & Physics

Category: Fine Bindings, Gifts

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