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Library and Archives - Michael Faraday and World Book Day
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March 1, 2012
Michael Faraday and World Book Day

Happy World Book Day!


Today is a day to celebrate all things book-related so today we relate a tale that illustrates the power of books to change your life.


The Correspondence of Michael Faraday, volume 6, 1861-1867Michael Faraday is today known as one of the most influential scientists in history, but growing up he received no formal schooling and at the age of fourteen he became apprenticed to a local book-binder, George Riebau. During his seven year apprenticeship Faraday learnt all the skills necessary to become a professional book-binder, but he was also given the opportunity to read through some of the books he was working on. With the permission of Riebau, he would copy and make notes from the books that caught his imagination, such as Isaac Watts’ The Improvemente of the Mind (a work that would itself inspire Faraday to create the commonplace notebooks that are now held at the IET Archives).


He also developed a keen interest in science and electricity, and so his kindly employer allowed him to attend lectures given by Humphry Davy at the Royal Institution. After impressing Davy by sending him his notes on the lectures, Faraday was offered a job as Davy’s secretary and chemical assistant, and so began a long and fruitful relationship with the Royal Institution. Faraday had left behind his book-binding days but he recognised how important they had been to his scientific career, and so he later dedicated a book to his previous employer George Riebau.


Whilst we are discussing Faraday, a quick mention also that the IET Library now has for loan and for sale the 6th volume of The Correspondence of Michael Faraday, volume 6, 1861-1867, written by Frank James. Why not immerse yourself in this fascinating book, whilst also celebrating World Book Day.


Contact the library and archives for further information.

Edited: 01 March 2012 at 03:03 PM by Hazel Jones


    Posted By: Hazel Jones @ 01 March 2012 02:48 PM     General  

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