A new exhibition at the Royal Society in London explores the life and work of Roger Boscovich, a renowned Croatian physicist, mathematician, astronomer and diplomat, on the 300th anniversary of his birth and 250th anniversary of his election to the Royal Society.
Visitors will have the opportunity to view rare books and archives relating to Boscovich, his work, and his influence on British scientists including Joseph Priestley, Humphry Davy and J J Thomson. Curated by Dr Ivica Martinovic, the exhibition aims to raise British awareness of this major figure.
Roger Boscovic was born in Dubrovnik in May 1711 and worked for much of his life in Rome. The astounding 18th century scientist, Boscovich, amongst other achievements, developed his own theory of forces, proposed static solutions for the reparation of the dome of St. Peter's in Rome when cracks threatened its stability, and founded the famous Brera Observatory in Milan.
Boscovich visited the Royal Society while in London on a diplomatic mission in 1760, and was elected a Fellow of the Society in 1761. Although Boscovich stayed in London for a short period of time, he continued to correspond with the Society, and to present his publications in physics and astronomy to the Society's library.
The exhibition will feature rare and unique volumes from the Royal Society library, some of which will be on show for the first time. The first edition of Newton's Optice, Boscovich's presentation copies of his own works, and a copy of William Thomson, Lord Kelvin's Baltimore Lectures from his own library with annotations and additions, are among the items on display.
The exhibition opened to the public on Thursday 24 November 2011 and will run until Wednesday 15 February 2012. Visits to the exhibition are by guided tour only. For more information and tour times visit the Royal Society website.