World’s Super Scientists – Boyle Robert

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A Saga of a Scientist Boiling with Enthusiasm – Boyle Robert

Scientist Boyle Robert (1627 to 1691) Anglo-Irish chemist was born in 1627 in Ireland, the tenth son in a wealthy family. He learned Latin, French, English, Hebrew, Greek and Syriac.

In 1641 the 14 year old boy came to follow the footsteps of Galileo in Italy.

In the period 1645-55 he wrote many essays. One of his essays inspired the writing of Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift.

During 1656-68 he resided at Oxford; got acquainted with Robert Hooke of Royal Society. In 1660 an informal group of brilliant scientists formed a society called the “Invisible College” which later was named as Royal Society of England.

Scientist Boyle opined that air is necessary for combustion, respiration and the transmission of sound.

In 1961-62 Boyle’s law was discovered with the following experiment.

Scientist Boyle, Robert constructed a glass tube “J” shaped with the shorter left end sealed; the longer right end was more than ten feet in length. He poured some mercury into the tube, the level was equal in both limbs; more mercury was added slowly, there was uneven rise in both limbs.

When the long limb had 29 inches of Hg more than the short limb, the volume of the air inside the left limb was half the original! A column of Hg of about 8 feet compressed the air into a quarter of the original.

Boyle ‘s Law :  The volume of a gas varies inversely with the pressure

Boyle ‘s Law also called Mariotte’s law :  At a constant temperature the volume of a gas is inversely proportional to the pressure.

pv = k, k being a constant PV = P’V’

P V pressure and volume under one set of conditions.

P’V’ pressure and volume under a different set of conditions.

Scientist Boyle attacked the Aristotelian theory of four elements — earth, air, fire and water and the three principles — salt, sulfur and mercury proposed by Parcelsus.

In 1668 he endowed Boyle’s lectures. Boyle was a founder and fellow of the Royal Society. He was a prolific writer on variety of subjects – science, philosophy, theology, etc.

Scientist Boyle Robert Other ContributionsGeneral Studies Question Bank CD

1. Scientist Boyle Robert investigated the speed of sound, the reasons for color.

2. Crystal structure.

3. Static electricity.

4. Scientist Boyle Robert embarked upon an experiment to discover oxygen — forerunner of Priestley.

5. Animal will not survive, if devoid of oxygen.

6. Sulphur will not burn if heated in vacuum; therefore oxygen is needed.

7. Scientist Boyle Robert distinguished acids as different from alkalies.

In 1690 Scientist Boyle Robert wrote to Christian Virtuoso, “Study of Nature is a central religious duty.”

Scientist Boyle Robert died in 1691. The tribute of his colleagues was, “Robert Boyle smells the truth”.
General Studies Question Bank CD
Tailpiece

What is truth?

An English princess with an Egyptian boyfriend crashes in a French tunnel while travelling in a German car fitted with a Dutch engine driven by a Belgian driver, who was high on Scottish whisky, followed closely by Italian paparazzi; after an accident, treated by an American doctor using Brazilian medicines, dies!

Memorialize who? Princess Diana

In the above event, truth was not different from facts.