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This title in other editions

Eurekas and Euphorias: The Oxford Book of Scientific Anecdotes

by

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:


The march of science has been marked through the years by episodes of drama and comedy, of failure as well as triumph, by outrageous strokes of luck, deserved and undeserved, and sometimes by human tragedy. From the death of Archimedes at the hands of an irritated Roman soldier to the concoction of a superconducting wit hes' brew at the very close of the twentieth centure, the stories in Eurekas and Euphorias pour out, told with wit and relish by Walter Gratzer.

Synopsis:

The march of science has been marked through the years by episodes of drama and comedy, of failure as well as triumph, by outrageous strokes of luck, deserved and undeserved, and sometimes by human tragedy. In Eurekas and Euphorias, Walter Gratzer captures the human face of discovery as he

relates many intriguing tales of scientific adventures spanning over two thousand years.

Open this book at random and you may chance on the clumsy chemist named Sapper who broke a thermometer in a reaction vat and made the discovery that launched the modern dyestuff industry. Or the physicist who dissolved his gold Nobel Prize medal in acid to prevent it from falling into the hands

of the Nazis. The book uncovers deep intellectual friendships, as well as ferocious animosities, and even acts of theft and malice, deceit, and a hoax or two. Indeed, we discover that scientists come in all shapes--the obsessive and the dilettantish, the genial, the envious, the preternaturally

brilliant and the slow-witted who sometimes saw further in the end, the open-minded and the intolerant, recluses and arrivistes. We meet mathematicians and physicists in prison cells, and even in a madhouse, making important advances in their field. And we witness the careers, sometimes tragic,

sometimes carefree, of the great women scientists, from Hypatia of Alexandria, to Sophie Germain and Sonia Kovalevskaya, to Marie Curie and her relentless battle with the French Academy.

Told with wit and relish, here then is a glorious parade to delight the reader, with stories to astonish, to instruct, and most especially, to entertain.

Synopsis:

The march of science has been marked through the years by episodes of drama and comedy, of failure as well as triumph, by outrageous strokes of luck, deserved and undeserved, and sometimes by human tragedy. From the death of Archimedes at the hands of an irritated Roman soldier to the concoction of a superconducting witches' brew at the close of the twentieth century, the stories in Eurekas and Euphorias pour out, told with wit and relish by Walter Gratzer.

Open this book at random and you may chance on the clumsy chemist named Sapper who broke a thermometer in a reaction vat and made the discovery that launched the modern dyestuff industry. Or the physicist who dissolved his gold Nobel Prize medal in acid to prevent it from falling into the hands of the Nazis. We meet mathematicians and physicists in prison cells, and even in a madhouse, making important advances in their field. And we witness the careers, sometimes tragic, sometimes carefree, of the great women scientists, from Hypatia of Alexandria, to Sophie Germain and Sonia Kovalevskaya, to Marie Curie and her relentless battle with the French Academy. A glorious parade unfolds to delight the reader, with stories to astonish, to instruct, and most especially, to entertain.

About the Author

Walter Gratzer is a biophysicist at the Randall Institute, King's College London. He is known to a wide readership through his book reviews which appear regularly in Nature. His books include The Undergrowth of Science: Delusion, Self-Deception and Human Frailty, Longman Literary Companion to Science, and The Bedside Nature.

Table of Contents

A selection of anecdotes...

Cats and dogmas

A mathematical death

The Bucklands deflate a miracle

Farmyard thermodynamics

Chemistry in the kitchen: the discovery of nitrocellulose

Fortune favours the ham fist

Rutherford finds a solution

The unbreakable cypher

Mathematical peril

The Pauli principle

The first Eureka

Baccy and quanta

Hewn in marble

Koch on cooking

Ben Franklin stills the waves

Loving an enzyme

The poltergeist next door

Tug-of-war on the thread of life

The living fossil

Smoking for the Führer

Product Details

ISBN:
9780198609407
Author:
Gratzer, Walter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Author:
null, Walter
Subject:
General science
Subject:
Science
Subject:
Physics
Subject:
History
Subject:
Scientists
Subject:
History of Science-General
Copyright:
Series:
Popular Science
Publication Date:
August 2004
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
27 halftones
Pages:
368
Dimensions:
5 x 7.6 x 1 in 0.556 lb

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Related Subjects

Reference » Science Reference » General
Science and Mathematics » History of Science » General
Science and Mathematics » Mathematics » General
Science and Mathematics » Mathematics » Probability and Statistics » General
Science and Mathematics » Mathematics » Probability and Statistics » Statistics

Eurekas and Euphorias: The Oxford Book of Scientific Anecdotes New Trade Paper
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Product details 368 pages Oxford University Press - English 9780198609407 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , The march of science has been marked through the years by episodes of drama and comedy, of failure as well as triumph, by outrageous strokes of luck, deserved and undeserved, and sometimes by human tragedy. In Eurekas and Euphorias, Walter Gratzer captures the human face of discovery as he

relates many intriguing tales of scientific adventures spanning over two thousand years.

Open this book at random and you may chance on the clumsy chemist named Sapper who broke a thermometer in a reaction vat and made the discovery that launched the modern dyestuff industry. Or the physicist who dissolved his gold Nobel Prize medal in acid to prevent it from falling into the hands

of the Nazis. The book uncovers deep intellectual friendships, as well as ferocious animosities, and even acts of theft and malice, deceit, and a hoax or two. Indeed, we discover that scientists come in all shapes--the obsessive and the dilettantish, the genial, the envious, the preternaturally

brilliant and the slow-witted who sometimes saw further in the end, the open-minded and the intolerant, recluses and arrivistes. We meet mathematicians and physicists in prison cells, and even in a madhouse, making important advances in their field. And we witness the careers, sometimes tragic,

sometimes carefree, of the great women scientists, from Hypatia of Alexandria, to Sophie Germain and Sonia Kovalevskaya, to Marie Curie and her relentless battle with the French Academy.

Told with wit and relish, here then is a glorious parade to delight the reader, with stories to astonish, to instruct, and most especially, to entertain.

"Synopsis" by , The march of science has been marked through the years by episodes of drama and comedy, of failure as well as triumph, by outrageous strokes of luck, deserved and undeserved, and sometimes by human tragedy. From the death of Archimedes at the hands of an irritated Roman soldier to the concoction of a superconducting witches' brew at the close of the twentieth century, the stories in Eurekas and Euphorias pour out, told with wit and relish by Walter Gratzer.

Open this book at random and you may chance on the clumsy chemist named Sapper who broke a thermometer in a reaction vat and made the discovery that launched the modern dyestuff industry. Or the physicist who dissolved his gold Nobel Prize medal in acid to prevent it from falling into the hands of the Nazis. We meet mathematicians and physicists in prison cells, and even in a madhouse, making important advances in their field. And we witness the careers, sometimes tragic, sometimes carefree, of the great women scientists, from Hypatia of Alexandria, to Sophie Germain and Sonia Kovalevskaya, to Marie Curie and her relentless battle with the French Academy. A glorious parade unfolds to delight the reader, with stories to astonish, to instruct, and most especially, to entertain.

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