The House of Experiment in Seventeenth-Century England

  title={The House of Experiment in Seventeenth-Century England},
  author={Steven Shapin},
  pages={373 - 404}
  • S. Shapin
  • Published 1 September 1988
  • Education
  • Isis
M SUBJECT is the place of experiment. I want to know where experimental science was done. In what physical and social settings? Who was in attendance at the scenes in which experimental knowledge was produced and evaluated? How were they arrayed in physical and social space? What were the conditions of access to these places, and how were transactions across their thresholds managed? The historical materials with which I am going to deal are of special interest. Seventeenth-century England… 
Introduction to “Working at the Margins: Labor and the Politics of Participation in Natural History, 1700–1830” **
  • P. Anthony
  • History
    Berichte zur Wissenschaftsgeschichte
  • 2021
This special issue seeks to understand natural history from the perspective of those for whom making knowledge was part of making a living, and to highlight the labor regimes that sustained natural knowledge economies in Europe and its colonies through the long eighteenth century.
Introduction: Domesticity and the Historiography of Science
Nearly three decades ago, Steven Shapin argued that, among a range of venues in seventeenth-century England — places like the shops of apothecaries and instrument makers, coffeehouses, royal palaces,
The Architecture of the English Domestic Library, 1600–1700
Abstract The seventeenth century saw the dramatic growth of book collections, as books became a desirable commodity. The ruling classes used books to strengthen their political, social and
"The Mind is Its Own Place": Science and Solitude in Seventeenth-Century England
The Argument It is not easy to point to the place of knowledge in our culture. More precisely, it is difficult to locate the production of our most valued forms of knowledge, including those of
Political exhaustion and the experiment of street: Boyle meets Hobbes in Occupy Madrid
This essay describes the complex negotiations around stranger sociability, public space, and democratic knowledge that shaped the meetings of popular assemblies in the wake of the Spanish 15M/Occupy
Nature as Spectacle; Experience and Empiricism in Early Modern Experimental Practice
This article aims to challenge the thesis of the craft origins of scientific empiricism by demonstrating how the empirical practices of early experimentalism differed in significant ways from the
The Politics of Experiment in the Eighteenth Century: The Pursuit of Audience and the Manipulation of Consensus in the Debate over Lightning Rods
The shape and use of lightning rods sparked debate within the British scientific community in the third quarter of the eighteenth century. A simple investigation into the efficacy of blunted versus
Gimcrack's Legacy: Sex, Wealth, and the Theater of Experimental Philosophy
Experimental philosophy in the late seventeenth century depended upon what Stephen Shapin and Simon Schaffer have famously characterized as the "modest witness" that is, a gendered figure of
Senses of Localism
A generation ago scientific ideas floated free in the air, as historians gazed up at them in wonder and admirationAdi Ophir and Steven Shapin1INTRODUCTION"That knowledge is ineluctably local and
“Into the Valley of Darkness”: Reflections on the Royal Society in the Eighteenth Century
In reflecting on studies of the Royal Society of London during its first two hundred years of existence, I am reminded of Nathan Reingold's remark on the tendency to see the career of American


Public Experiments and Displays of Virtuosity: The Core-Set Revisited
Scientific tests conducted in public are paradoxical in that lay persons are expected to draw firm conclusions from experiments that normally require expert interpretation, and in that these firm
Mathematical vs. Experimental Traditions in the Development of Physical Science
Mathematical vs. Experimental Traditions in the Development of Physical Science Anyone who studies the history of scientific development repeatedly encounters a question, one version of which would
These experiments were generally repetitions of experiments already made in private and exhibited afterwards for the satisfaction and information of the Society
  • The Life of Dr. Robert Hooke
For this episode, and for Boyle-More relations generally, see Shapin and Schaffer, Leviathan and the Air-Pump
  • Hydrostatical Discourse
The episode concerned reports by physicians in Danzig regarding the transfusion of animal blood into humans: see Oldenburg to Boyle
    Towards Solomon's House" (cit. n. 41), p. 81. The same author described the council as "the Societys Parliament
    • The Royal Society: Concept and Creation
    • 1967
    for Oldenburg's familiarity with proceedings at Montmor's house
      Who Was Robert Hooke?" (cit. n. 25). The quotations, instances of which could be multiplied indefinitely, are from Hooke's 1672-1680 Diary
        For the Commons mace: Erskine May, Usage of Parliament
          The Complete Gentleman (cit. n. 22), p. 24; and Brathwait, The English Gentleman (cit