An author found in the philosophical, mathematical and scientific works of Curwen's home library in Providence.
The Honorable Robert Boyle (1627-1691), Anglo-Irish physician and chemist, wasborn in Lismore, Ireland. Educated in Geneva and settled in England, he devoted himself to objective observation and experimentation in research. Considered a founding father of modern chemistry and scientific method. He promoted the profession and was a leading member of the Royal Society which was founded in 1662. A believer in alchemy, he was also the first to distinguish between chemical elements and compounds. He invented Boyle's Law of physics, improved the air pump, observed that air is absorbed in combustions, and that metals gain weight when they oxidize. Among his works are "The Sceptical Chemist" (1661), "Origin of Forms and Qualities According to the Corpuscular Philosophy" (1666) and "Discourse of Things Above Reason" (1681). One of the most influencial acts he performed was to bring noted chemist and Rosicrucian Peter Sthael, of Strasburgh, to Oxford to teach in 1659. Among Sthael's pupils were Anthony Wood, Christopher Wren, and John Lock.
[The Case of Charles Dexter Ward - H.P.L.]