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The Fontana History of Chemistry, which draws on both the author’s own original research and that of other scholars, is an unrivalled work of synthesis. Beginning with the first tentative chemical explorations, Dr Brock proceeds via the alchemists’ futile, but frequently profitable, efforts to turn lead into gold to recount the emergence of the modern discipline of chemistry as fashioned by Boyle, Lavoisier and Dalton. Brock chronicles chemical developments during the last 150 years, emphasizing the roles of purity, analysis and synthesis, the exploration of reaction mechanisms, the industrialization of chemical change, and how chemistry has been taught and disseminated. While brilliantly successful in explaining and exploiting chemical change, modern chemistry can prompt more fear than excitement in the uninitiated. This book seeks to enlighten: to assess links between theory and practice and to encourage a heightened awareness to promote a better public understanding of chemistry and the modern phamaceutical industries..

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