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A History of the Life Sciences, Revised and Expanded - download pdf or read online

By Lois N. Magner

I skimmed this publication for historical past info, and used to be inspired that Magner's didn't interpret and decide historic historical past on a latest technology foundation, yet particularly offered and evaluated every one scientist as he handled the knowledge he had, answering the questions offered to him by way of the tradition during which he lived. Magner additionally did rather well explaining medical rules to me -- a a bit scientifically expert, yet non-science significant.

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Extra resources for A History of the Life Sciences, Revised and Expanded

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In "On Nature" Empedocles described a young girl playing with a gleaming brass clepsydra. When she covered the mouth of the cylinder and dipped the device into a fluid, no liquid entered the vessel because air inside prevented liquid from entering. Uncovering the device allowed air to escape as liquid entered. These observations, Empedocles argued, proved that air is not simply empty space. Air, therefore, has the nature of a substantial although invisible body. Once aware that nature works by unseen bodies, we can overcome the limitations of the senses by combining reason and observation in order to learn about things that are not directly perceptible.

Their young were born alive and complete and were nursed by the females of the species. Next were creatures that were less warm, but still moist. These animals were born alive, but developed from eggs that grew inside the body of the mother. Lower down the scale were creatures like birds and reptiles that were warm and dry and laid complete eggs. Lower still were the cold and earthly animals like frogs that produced incomplete eggs. The lowest of all sexually reproducing forms were worms that produced eggs.

Atomic theory, on the other hand, immediately appeals to modern scientists as a brilliant, if somewhat crude anticipation of one of the most fundamental concepts of modern chemistry and physics. When more closely examined, the atomic theory of the ancients emerges most clearly as an elegant solution to problems that had puzzled philosophers since the time of Thales, rather than a primitive precursor of John Dalton's (1766-1844) atomic theory. Much is uncertain about the lives of the fifth-century atomists Leucippus (fl.

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