Didactic Chemistry in Leiden

in Inventing Chemistry

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print April 2012 | ISBN: 9780226677606
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226677620 | DOI:
Didactic Chemistry in Leiden

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This chapter considers the origins of the didactic tradition in chemistry beginning with Andreas Libavius. It also challenges the Owen Hannaway thesis, indicating that didactic chemistry did not accomplish the revolution in chemistry that Hannaway saw in Libavius's writings. Hannaway argued that Libavius's Alchemia founded the tradition of chemistry textbook writing, and was dedicated to the open communication of chemical recipes and ideas. Herman Boerhaave valued didactic chemistry as a body of chemical operations, skills, and concepts that any competent chemist needed to master. The popularity of didactic chemistry showed a change in the traditional pedagogy of chemistry. Carel de Maets tried to explain the philosophical foundation for his approach to chemistry. Although Boerhaave found that most of his experiments on metals and metallic medicines did not support the claims made about them, this work exhibited his theoretical interests in chemistry.

Keywords: didactic chemistry; Andreas Libavius; Owen Hannaway; Alchemia; Carel de Maets; metallic medicines; Herman Boerhaave

Chapter.  10968 words. 

Subjects: History of Science and Technology

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