Science Mysteries Alchemy- Chemistry Antiquity of the Chemical Art

Antiquity of the Chemical Art

Antiquity of the Chemical Art
Catalog # SKU2303
Publisher TGS Publishing
Weight 1.00 lbs
Author Name James Mactear
ISBN 10: 0000000000
ISBN 13: 0000000000000


Antiquity of
the Chemical Art

James Mactear

THE study of the History of Chemistry as an art, or as a science, is one which possesses peculiar fascination for its votaries. It has been the subject of deep research and much discussion, much has been written upon the subject, and many theories have been broached to account for its origin.



In dealing with the question of the antiquity of chemical art, it has been too much the habit to look at the question with a view of discovering when and who it was that first brought forth, fully clothed as a science, the art of chemistry.

Let us look at the definition of the science given by Boerhæve, about 1732. He describes chemistry as "an art which teaches the manner of performing certain physical operations, whereby bodies cognizable to the senses, or capable of being rendered cognizable, and of being contained in vessels, are so changed by means of proper instruments as to produce certain determinate effects, and at the same time discover the causes thereof, for the service of the various arts."

Now, it is amply evident that, long before the various known facts could be collected and welded into one compact whole as a science, there must have existed great store of intellectual wealth, as well as mere hereditary practical knowledge of the various chemical facts.

I do not think it will be disputed that, until comparatively recent times, technical knowledge has constantly been in advance of theory, and that it is not too much to conclude that, no matter where we first find actual records of our science, its natal day must have long before dawned. Even in our day, when theoretical science, as applied to chemistry, has made such immense strides, how often do we find that it is only now that theory comes in to explain facts, known as such long previous, and those engaged in practical chemical work know how much technical knowledge is still unwritten, and what may even be called traditionary.

50 pages - 8¼ x 5¼ softcover