BookBrowse Reviews The Age of Wonder by Richard Holmes

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The Age of Wonder

How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science

by Richard Holmes

The Age of Wonder by Richard Holmes
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  • First Published:
    Jul 2009, 576 pages
    Paperback:
    Mar 2010, 576 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Jo Perry

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A riveting history of the men and women whose discoveries and inventions gave birth to the Romantic Age of Science

A guide to the sublime new physical and intellectual universe inhabited by Wordsworth, Coleridge, Keats, Shelley, Mary Shelley, and Byron; a survey of the scientific discoveries that underpin contemporary perceptions and investigations of the natural world; and a history of the ideas that still inform our sense of what it means to be a poet or a scientist, The Age of Wonder is stirring reading for anyone interested in the lives of extraordinary, world-altering people. Holmes builds his lucid and beautiful history around Joseph Banks, Tahitian adventurer and patron of scientific exploration and experimentation through his leadership of the Royal Society; William Herschel, visionary constructor of telescopes and discoverer of the planet Uranus; his sister, Caroline, astronomer in her own right and discoverer of many comets; Mungo Park, African explorer; and Humphry Davy, chemist, ...

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