Skeptical Chemist: The Story of Robert Boyle

Skeptical Chemist: The Story of Robert Boyle

by Roberta Baxter

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Laura Ruttig
Baxter's well-researched biography provides a detailed and inspiring look at the life of the 17th-century scientist Robert Boyle. Paintings from the period and reproductions from Boyle's own writings break up the chunks of text. Baxter's useful and intriguing portrayal examines Boyle's life, from his early schooling, up to his later poor health, and onto his legacy to modern scientists. Boyle witnessed and contributed to the Scientific Revolution, performing hundreds of experiments—many of which are repeated today in introductory chemistry and physics courses. His experiments helped topple Aristotle's approach of reasoning strictly from deduction, leading to a new scientific method. Boyle's experiments also led him to work out a mathematical correlation between pressure, temperature and volume that became known as the ideal gas law. It remains useful today for demonstrating the basic relationship between the three properties. More than simply a biography, Baxter's approach inspires the reader to follow Boyle's example in trying to study and experiment to understand the natural world's laws.
School Library Journal

Gr 6 Up
Baxter introduces a significant scientist about whom surprisingly little has been published. Boyle set standards for the scientific method that remain influential today, and he challenged accepting the authority of the ancients, such as Aristotle. Some of his findings seem obvious to us today, but his biggest contribution to science was the practice of conducting repeatable experiments. A comical poem about the chemist's methods, written by a contemporary, enriches the account. Each chapter opens with a garish mixture of a gothic typeface in purple on lime-green pages. This unusual design, along with color reproductions of period paintings and engravings, serves to break up the text. A chapter on Boyle's legacy, a time line, and source notes enhance this volume as does a list of authoritative Web sites.
—Janet S. ThompsonCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

Morgan Reynolds Pub
Publication date:
Profiles in Science Series
Product dimensions:
6.34(w) x 9.26(h) x 0.48(d)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

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