Robert Boyle

Robert Boyle (1627-1691)

Boyle was the seventh son of the ‘Great Earl’ of Cork, Richard Boyle.  He was born in Castle Lismore in Munster, but educated largely in England, first at Eton, then at his father’s estate in Dorsetshire.  He travelled to the continent in the late 1630s, spending the early years of the 1640s in Italy where he encountered the ideas of Gallileo.  Lack of money forced him to return to England in 1644.  There he quickly advanced to the forefront of the group that was to become the Royal Society after the Restoration.  Boyle had little affinity for Ireland, living in Oxford until 1668, and thereafter in London.  He devoted his studies primarily to chemistry and natural philosophy, but also greatly to theology.  His works are of immense significance for the history of science, and he has often been dubbed  “the father of chemistry”; accordingly, much study has been devoted to him, and this site will provide a bibliography in due course.  The following list is an indication of the extent and nature of his writings, but it does not raise the issue of the relation of his Latin compositions and translations to his English works, a matter which awaits more specialised treatment.  The list of works below indicates only the first edition of each work, many of which appeared in numerous subsequent editions in England and on the continent.




1.         Tentamina Quaedam Physiologia, (London, 1661), Quarto.

2.         Chymista Scepticus Vel Dubia et Paradoxa (London, 1662), Octavo.

3.         Defensio Doctrinae de Elatere et Gravitate Aeris (London, 1663), Octavo.

4.         Cogitationes de S. Scripturae Stylo, (Oxford, 1665), 12mo.

5.         Experimenta et Considerationes de Coloribus, (London, 1665), 12mo.

6.         Chymista Scepticus Vel Dubia et Paradoxa Chymico-Physica Circa Spagyricorum Principia (Rotterdam, 1668).

7.         Origo Formarum et Qualitatum (Oxford, 1669),12mo.

8.         Paradoxica Hydrostatica Novis Experimentis, (Oxford, 1669), 12mo.

9.         Tractatus Scripti..Ubi I. Mira Aeris, (London, 1670), 12mo.

10.       Tractatibus de Qualitatibus Rerum Cosmicis, (London, 1672), 12mo.

11.       Exercitatio de Origine et Viribus Gemmarum (London, 1673), 12mo.

13.       Exercitationes de Athmospheris, (London, 1673), 12mo.

15.       De Hypothesis Mechanicae Excellentia et Fundamentis Considerationes (London, 1674), 12mo.

16.       Observationes de Salsedine Maris, (Bonn, 1675), 12mo.

17.       Tractatus in Quibus Continentur, I. Suspiciones de Latentibus Quibusdum Qualitatibus Aeris, (London, 1676), 12mo.

18.       Opera Varia, (Geneva, 1677), Quarto.

19.       Experimentorum Novorum Physico-Mechanorum Continuatio Secunda,  (London, 1680), Octavo.

20.       Noctiluca Aeria, Sive Nova Quaedam Phaenomena, (London, 1682), 12mo.

21.       Apparatus Ad Historiam Naturalem Sanguinis Humani, (London, 1684), Octavo.

22.       Tentamen Porologicum Sive Ad Porositatum Corporum Tum Animalium,  (London, 1684), Octavo.

23.       De Specificorum Remediorum, (London, 1686), 12mo.

24.       Experimenta et Observationes Physicae (London, 1691), Octavo.

26.       Exercitationes de Utilitate Philosophiae Naturalis Experimentalis, (Lindau, 1692), Quarto.

27.       Experimenta, Observationes, &c. Circa Mechanicam Variarum, Particularum Qualitatum, Origenem Sive Productionem, (London, 1692), Octavo.

28.       Generalia Capita Pro Historia Naturali Regionum Majorum Vel Minorum, ed. Denis Papin (Geneva, 1696), Quarto.

29.       Tractatus Varii Continentes Nova Experimenta Circa Relationem Inter Flammam et Aerem et Circa Explosiones (Geneva, 1696), 12mo.

30.       Opera Omnia (Venice, 1696-7), Octavo.

31.       Specimen Unum Atque Alterum..Experimenta Chymica (London, 1661), Quarto.

32.       Debita Deo Ab Humano Intellectu, (London, 1684), 12mo.

33.       De Ipsa Natura Sive Libera in Receptam Naturae Notionem Disquisitio Ad Amicum, (London, 1687), 12mo.

34.       Catalogus Librorum Tractatuumque Philosophicorum (London, 1688), Octavo.

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