The Elements: A Very Short Introduction

Paperback | August 10, 2004

byPhilip Ball

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This Very Short Introduction traces the history and cultural impact of the elements on humankind, and examines why people have long sought to identify the substances around them. Looking beyond the Periodic Table, the author examines our relationship with matter, from the uncomplicated visionof the Greek philosophers, who believed there were four elements - earth, air, fire, and water - to the work of modern-day scientists in creating elements such as hassium and meitnerium. Packed with anecdotes, The Elements is a highly engaging and entertaining exploration of the fundamentalquestion: what is the world made from?

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This Very Short Introduction traces the history and cultural impact of the elements on humankind, and examines why people have long sought to identify the substances around them. Looking beyond the Periodic Table, the author examines our relationship with matter, from the uncomplicated visionof the Greek philosophers, who believed ther...

Philip Ball is a science writer and a consultant editor for Nature, where he was formerly an editor for physical science for over 10 years. He writes about all areas of science for the international press, and has broadcast on TV and radio. His previous books include Designing the Molecular World, The Self-Made Tapestry, H20: A Biogr...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:186 pages, 6.85 × 4.37 × 0.48 inPublished:August 10, 2004Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0192840991

ISBN - 13:9780192840998

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Table of Contents

1. Aristotle's Quartet: The elements in antiquity2. Revolution: How oxygen changed the world3. Gold: The most desirable element4. The Eightfold Path: Organizing the elements5. The Atom Factories: Making new elements6. The Chemical Brothers: Why isotopes are useful7. For All Practical Purposes: Technologies of the elementsEnd notesFuther reading

Editorial Reviews

`The book contains some delightful anecdotes'David Johnson, Times Higher Educational Supplement