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Whipple Library

Department of History and Philosophy of Science


The tides and kindred phenomena in the solar system : the substance of lectures delivered in 1897 at the Lowell Institute, Boston, Massachusetts, by George Howard Darwin.
London : J. Murray, 1898.
STORE 98:30

By the late 19th century, Darwin’s position as an authority on tides was well established. In 1888 he had produced the ‘Tides’ article for the 9th edition of Encyclopaedia Britannica. His non-mathematical treatise on The tides and kindred phenomena… grew from a course of Lowell Lectures he delivered in Boston in 1897. A semi-popular account, avoiding overly technical language, it aimed to present his scientific work to a larger public, and in particular to those readers who desired to understand the tides. The book features explanations of the practical methods of observing and predicting the tides, and explores their close connections with astronomy. It also includes Darwin’s theory of the genesis of the moon: that it was formed from matter pulled away from a still-molten earth by solar tides. The book met with great success and was translated into several languages, including German, Spanish, Italian and Hungarian. Darwin worked on a new and expanded 3rd edition before his death in 1912.

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