Robert Boyle Papers, Volume 8 Spread 0

Robert Boyle Papers, Volume 8 Spread 0 cover

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The Royal Society’s Robert Boyle collection consists of forty six volumes of papers of folio or quarto format, covering the life and works of the natural philosopher.

Volume 8 contains some of the most significant items in the collection, including:

• The first treatise that Boyle wrote after he discovered science, ‘Of the Study of the Booke of Nature’ (fols. 127-39)

• Alchemical texts by Boyle, including part of his 'Dialogue on the Transmutation of Metals' (fols.160-4, 171)

• Workdiary 22, devoted to extracts illustrating Boyle’s reading (fols. 65-116), and Workdiaries 4 and 12 (fols. 118-22 and 140-8)

• A copy of ‘The Order of My Severall Treatises’ in which Boyle laid out his intellectual agenda (fol. 64v)

• A text on porosity first published in 'The Works of Robert Boyle' (2000) (fols. 29-45)

• Manuscript material relating to such key published works by Boyle as 'Of the Usefulness of Natural Philosophy' (fols. 1-28, 47-61, 190-5) and 'A Free Enquiry into the Vulgarly Receiv’d Notion of Nature' (fols. 149-52)

• Unpublished material, including Boyle’s list of scientific desiderata and the extant fragment of Boyle’s ‘philosophical romance’, 'The Aspiring Naturalist, both published in Michael Hunter’s Boyle Studies' (2015) (fols. 206-10)