Pliny the Elder on Science and Technology

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Oxford University Press, 1999 - History - 467 pages
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The Elder Pliny's Natural History greatly influenced the content and character of subsequent technical literature. He has received little attention since the 1920s and this book is an overdue reassessment of Pliny's ideas and his text. Pliny had to adapt Latin and Greek to his scientific theories and this has rendered parts of his text ambiguous. Healy includes a detailed study of the technical language and also modern experiments simulating Pliny's techniques.
 

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Contents

Plinys Life and Career
1
Pliny the Writer
31
The Natural History
36
Plinys Sources
42
Mirabilia
63
Pliny and Research
71
Language and Style
79
Science in Antiquity
100
Earth Sciences
173
Minerals
190
Amber
250
Hydrocarbons
254
Meteorites
257
Minerals as Pigments
259
Metals
271
Technology
347

The Natural History and Technical Literature
106
Science in The Natural History
113
Chemistry
115
Niello
137
Dyes and Dyeing
138
Physics
142
APPENDIX From Observer to Horizon
171
Pliny and the Environment
371
The Natural History in the Middle Ages
380
Select Bibliography
393
Index Locorum
412
General Index
431
Copyright

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About the author (1999)

John F. Healy is at University of London.

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