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Robert Hooke - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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Robert Hooke. He was born: 18 July 1635 in Freshwater, Isle of Wight, England He died: 3 March 1703 in London, England.

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He was born: 18 July 1635 in Freshwater, Isle of Wight, England

  • He died: 3 March 1703 in London, England
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Robert Hooke wrote Micrographia, the first book describing observations made through a microscope. The drawing to the top left was created by Hooke. Hooke was the first person to use the word "cell" to identify microscopic structures when he was describing cork. Hooke also wrote Hooke's Law -- a law of elasticity for solid bodies

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No portrait survives of Robert Hooke. His name is somewhat obscure today, due in part to the enmity of his famous, influential, and extremely vindictive colleague, Sir Isaac Newton. Yet Hooke was perhaps the single greatest experimental scientist of the seventeenth century.

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He was apparently largely educated at home by his father, although he also served an apprenticeship to an artist. He was able to enter Westminster School at the age of thirteen, and from there went to Oxford, where some of the best scientists in England were working at the time.

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Hooke impressed them with his skills at designing experiments and building equipment, and soon became an assistant to the chemist Robert Boyle. In 1662 Hooke was named Curator of Experiments of the newly formed Royal Society of London -- meaning that he was responsible for demonstrating new experiments at the Society's weekly meetings.

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Hooke's reputation in the history of biology largely rests on his book Micrographia, published in 1665. Hooke devised the compound microscope and illumination system shown above, one of the best such microscopes of his time, and used it in his demonstrations at the Royal Society's meetings. With it he observed organisms as diverse as insects, sponges, bryozoans, foraminifera, and bird feathers.

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The end

Amanda Pena