The Age of Wonder: The Romantic Generation and the Discovery of the Beauty and Terror of Science
The Age of Wonder is a colorful and utterly absorbing history of the men and women whose discoveries and inventions at the end of the eighteenth century gave birth to the Romantic Age of Science. When young Joseph Banks stepped onto a Tahitian beach in 1769, he hoped to discover Paradise.... show more
The Age of Wonder is a colorful and utterly absorbing history of the men and women whose discoveries and inventions at the end of the eighteenth century gave birth to the Romantic Age of Science.
When young Joseph Banks stepped onto a Tahitian beach in 1769, he hoped to discover Paradise. Inspired by the scientific ferment sweeping through Britain, the botanist had sailed with Captain Cook in search of new worlds. Other voyages of discovery—astronomical, chemical, poetical, philosophical—swiftly follow in Richard Holmes’s thrilling evocation of the second scientific revolution. Through the lives of William Herschel and his sister Caroline, who forever changed the public conception of the solar system; of Humphry Davy, whose near-suicidal gas experiments revolutionized chemistry; and of the great Romantic writers, from Mary Shelley to Coleridge and Keats, who were inspired by the scientific breakthroughs of their day, Holmes brings to life the era in which we first realized both the awe-inspiring and the frightening possibilities of science—an era whose consequences are with us still.
Publish date: 2010-03-02
Pages no: 576
Edition language: English
This is an entertaining and informative, if selective, group biography of several Enlightenment scientists, as well as a broader cultural history of science, art and adventure. It begins in the 1760s, with the voyage of wealthy naturalist Joseph Banks to Tahiti with Captain Cook; continues with brot...
I think I'm done with non-fiction for a while. Nothing against it, I just read it until I get burned out on it and then go to something else. My favorite chapters in this were about Joseph Banks and his anthropological studies and Caroline Herschel, who is the first (timeline wise, earliest) female ...
This book is a fascinating voyage back to the Romantic Age in Europe when there were still far flung parts of the globe to explore, most of the chemical elements awaited discovery, and time and space were found to be much vaster than anyone had expected. Even more wonderfully, scientists and artist...