The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science

3.96 avg rating
( 7,419 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780375422225: The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science

A riveting history of the men and women whose discoveries and inventions at the end of the eighteenth century gave birth to the Romantic Age of Science.

When young Joseph Banks stepped onto a Tahitian beach in 1769, he hoped to discover Paradise. Inspired by the scientific ferment sweeping through Britain, the botanist had sailed with Captain Cook on his first Endeavour voyage in search of new worlds. Other voyages of discovery—astronomical, chemical, poetical, philosophical—swiftly follow in Richard Holmes’s original evocation of what truly emerges as an Age of Wonder.

Brilliantly conceived as a relay of scientific stories, The Age of Wonder investigates the earliest ideas of deep time and space, and the explorers of “dynamic science,” of an infinite, mysterious Nature waiting to be discovered. Three lives dominate the book: William Herschel and his sister Caroline, whose dedication to the study of the stars forever changed the public conception of the solar system, the Milky Way, and the meaning of the universe; and Humphry Davy, who, with only a grammar school education stunned the scientific community with his near-suicidal gas experiments that led to the invention of the miners’ lamp and established British chemistry as the leading professional science in Europe. This age of exploration extended to great writers and poets as well as scientists, all creators relishing in moments of high exhilaration, boundary-pushing and discovery.

Holmes’s extraordinary evocation of this age of wonder shows how great ideas and experiments—both successes and failures—were born of singular and often lonely dedication, and how religious faith and scientific truth collide. He has written a book breathtaking in its originality, its storytelling energy, and its intellectual significance.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

Review:

Amazon Exclusive: Oliver Sacks on The Age of Wonder

Oliver Sacks is the author of Musicophilia, Awakenings,The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat, and many other books, for which he has received numerous awards, including the Hawthornden Prize, a Polk Award, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and lives in New York City, where he is a practicing neurologist. Read his exclusive guest review of The Age of Wonder:

I am a Richard Holmes addict. He is an incomparable biographer, but in The Age of Wonder, he rises to new heights and becomes the biographer not of a single figure, but of an entire unique period, when artist and scientist could share common aims and ambitions and a common language--and together create a "romantic," humanist science. We are once again on the brink of such an age, when science and art will come together in new and powerful ways. For this we could have no better model than the lives of William and Caroline Herschel and Humphry Davy, whose dedication and scientific inventiveness were combined with a deep sense of wonder and poetry in the universe. Only Holmes, who is so deeply versed in the people and culture of eighteenth-century science, could tell their story with such verve and resonance for our own time.

(Photo © Elena Seibert)

About the Author:

Richard Holmes is the author of Footsteps: Adventures of a Romantic Biographer; Sidetracks: Explorations of a Romantic Biographer; Dr. Johnson & Mr. Savage; Shelley: The Pursuit (for which he received the Somerset Maugham Award); Coleridge: Early Visions; and Coleridge: Darker Reflections (a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice and a National Book Critics Circle Award finalist). He lives in England.

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Buy New View Book
List Price: US$ 40.00
US$ 21.77

Convert Currency

Shipping: US$ 11.82
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.

Destination, Rates & Speeds

Add to Basket

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

HOLMES, Richard
Published by Pantheon, New York (2008)
ISBN 10: 0375422226 ISBN 13: 9780375422225
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
David Bunnett Books
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Pantheon, New York, 2008. HARDCOVER. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. Reprint. Thick, heavy 8vo. in tan cloth backed boards, 552pp, plates, index etc . . . . . [ CONDITION : NEW copy in NEW Dust Jacket ] . . . . . . . . . . . NOTE Due to size and/or weight shipping to destinations outside the UK will cost more than the price shown above. Orders made by card will be completed after you have approved the extra cost. . . . . . . . . We always ship in strong card packing. Bookseller Inventory # TH75991

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 21.77
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 11.82
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

2.

Richard Holmes
ISBN 10: 0375422226 ISBN 13: 9780375422225
New Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
LVeritas
(Newton, MA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Book Condition: New. Gift Quality Book in Excellent Condition. Bookseller Inventory # 36SEQU0014GP

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 30.95
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

3.

Richard Holmes
Published by Pantheon (2009)
ISBN 10: 0375422226 ISBN 13: 9780375422225
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Irish Booksellers
(Rumford, ME, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Pantheon, 2009. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0375422226

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 38.35
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

4.

Richard Holmes
Published by Pantheon (2009)
ISBN 10: 0375422226 ISBN 13: 9780375422225
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Ergodebooks
(RICHMOND, TX, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Pantheon, 2009. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0375422226

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 39.66
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

5.

Holmes, Richard
Published by Pantheon (2009)
ISBN 10: 0375422226 ISBN 13: 9780375422225
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 2
Seller:
Murray Media
(North Miami Beach, FL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Pantheon, 2009. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110375422226

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 43.48
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 1.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

6.

Holmes Richard
Published by Random House
ISBN 10: 0375422226 ISBN 13: 9780375422225
New Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Majestic Books
(London, ,, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Random House. Book Condition: New. pp. 576. Bookseller Inventory # 8190518

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 41.05
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 7.27
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

7.

Holmes, Richard
Published by Pantheon
ISBN 10: 0375422226 ISBN 13: 9780375422225
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Cloud 9 Books
(Wellington, FL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Pantheon. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0375422226 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW7.0116101

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 59.99
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 4.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

8.

Holmes, Richard
Published by Pantheon (2009)
ISBN 10: 0375422226 ISBN 13: 9780375422225
New Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Nearfine Books
(Brooklyn, NY, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Pantheon, 2009. Book Condition: new. Shiny and new! Expect delivery in 20 days. Bookseller Inventory # 9780375422225-1

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 64.99
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 4.00
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds