Out of the Shadow of a Giant: Hooke, Halley, and the Birth of Science

Out of the Shadow of a Giant: Hooke, Halley, and the Birth of Science

by John Gribbin, Mary Gribbin


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What if Newton had never lived? A compelling dual biography argues that Robert Hooke and Edmond Halley easily could have filled the giant’s shoes—and deserve credit for the birth of modern science.

Robert Hooke and Edmond Halley, whose place in history has been overshadowed by the giant figure of Newton, were pioneering scientists within their own right, and instrumental in establishing the Royal Society.
Although Newton is widely regarded as one of the greatest scientists of all time and the father of the English scientific revolution, John and Mary Gribbin uncover the fascinating story of Robert Hooke and Edmond Halley, whose scientific achievements neatly embrace the hundred years or so during which science as we know it became established. They argue persuasively that, even without Newton, science would have made a great leap forward in the second half of the seventeenth century, headed by two extraordinary figures, Hooke and Halley.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780300226751
Publisher: Yale University Press
Publication date: 10/24/2017
Pages: 328
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

John Gribbin is the author of many best-selling books, including In Search of Schrödinger’s Cat. Mary Gribbin is a teacher and science writer, and previous winner of the TES Junior Information Book Award. John and Mary are both Visiting Fellows at the University of Sussex.

Table of Contents

Preface v

Acknowledgements vii

Introduction: Out of the Shadows xi

1 From Freshwater to Oxford 1

2 The Most Ingenious Book That Ever I Read In My Life 25

3 Monumental Achievements 59

4 Meanwhile … 82

5 From Hackney to the High Seas 111

6 Of Spring and Secretaryship 135

7 A Mission of Gravity 159

8 Halley, Newton and the Comet 184

9 Not Fade Away 210

10 To Command a King's Ship 236

11 Legacies 262

Coda: How to do Science 283

Bibliography 286

Index 291

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