By Kim M.G.

ISBN-10: 0262112736

ISBN-13: 9780262112734

Within the eighteenth century, chemistry was once remodeled from an artwork to a public technology. Chemical affinity performed an immense function during this procedure as a metaphor, a thought area, and a subject matter of research. Goethe's optional Affinities, which was once in keeping with the present realizing of chemical affinities, attests to chemistry's presence within the public mind's eye. In Affinity, That Elusive Dream, Mi Gyung Kim restores chemical affinity to its right position in historiography and in Enlightenment public tradition. The Chemical Revolution is generally linked to Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier, who brought a latest nomenclature and a definitive textual content. Kim argues that chemical affinity was once erased from historic reminiscence via Lavoisier's omission of it from his textbook. She examines the paintings of many much less recognized French chemists (including physicians, apothecaries, metallurgists, philosophical chemists, and commercial chemists) to discover the institutional context of chemical guide and study, the social stratification that formed theoretical discourse, and the the most important shifts in analytic equipment. Apothecaries and metallurgists, she indicates, formed the most concept domain names via their leading edge method of research. Academicians and philosophical chemists led to transformative theoretical moments via their efforts to create a rational discourse of chemistry in song with the reigning common philosophy. the subjects mentioned contain the corpuscular (Cartesian) version in French chemistry within the early 1700s, the stabilization of the speculation domain names of composition and affinity, the reconstruction of French theoretical discourse in the midst of the eighteenth century, the Newtonian languages that plagued the area of affinity earlier than the Chemical Revolution, Guyton de Morveau's application of affinity chemistry, Lavoisier's reconstruction of the idea domain names of chemistry, and Berthollet's direction as an affinity chemist.

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Unlike physics, chemistry did not aim at contemplation and knowledge of mixt bodies, but sought to operate or to make all kinds of useful substances which placed it among the practical 26 Chapter 1 sciences. The goal of chemistry was to prepare medicaments more agreeable to the taste, more salubrious to the body, and less dangerous in their operation. Therein lay the difference of this art from “vulgar pharmacy,” which prepared medicaments neither with such perfection nor with similar virtue. Béguin defended chemical remedies explicitly by addressing every objection raised against their uses.

On the one hand, he deplored the hypocrisy of the Faculté in pretending to uphold the oracles of Hippocrates, while ignoring the real beneficence of spagyric remedies. On the other hand, he shunned the “imposters” who pretended to know chemistry but abused the art through their incompetence and fraudulent uses. 40 True to his purpose, Béguin allocated only a small portion of the book to general remarks, leaving the bulk of the book to practical operations of mineral substances. Béguin’s rhetorical intent comes through more clearly in his definition of chemistry, his defense of chemical remedies, and his use of Aristotle’s authority to establish the unique principles of chemistry.

16 A major rival of the Paris Faculté, the Montpellier Faculté accommodated Protestant students and chemical remedies. 17 The doctrinal and religious heresy of the Montpellier Faculté only fueled the Paris Faculté’s hostility toward their rival. 18 Mayerne defended chemical medicine in his lectures, which drew serious opposition from the Faculté. He left for England and served as a physician to James I and then to Charles I. It was these chemical physicians at Henry IV’s court, especially Ribit and Mayerne, who helped Jean Béguin establish his lecture course in Paris (ca.

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Affinity, That Elusive Dream: A Genealogy of the Chemical Revolution by Kim M.G.


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