The Chemical History of A Candle

Michael Faraday (1791 - 1867)

The Chemical History of a Candle is a series of 6 lectures on chemistry presented to a juvenile audience in 1848. Taught by Michael Faraday - a chemist and physicist, and regarded as the best experimentalist in the history of science - it is probably the most famous of the Christmas Lectures of the Royal Society.

Taking the everyday burning of a candle as a starting point, Faraday spans the arc from combustion and its products, via the components of water and air (oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen, carbon), back to the type of combustion that happens in the human body when we breathe.

The final lecture "On Platinum" describes a then new method to produce large quantities of Platinum. It was delivered before the Royal Institution on February 22, 1861. (Summary by Availle.)

Genre(s): *Non-fiction, Nature, Science

Language: English

Group: Royal Institution Christmas Lectures

Section Chapter Reader Time
Play 00 Preface Availle
Play 01 Lecture I Availle
Play 02 Lecture II Availle
Play 03 Lecture III Availle
Play 04 Lecture IV Availle
Play 05 Lecture V Availle
Play 06 Lecture VI Availle
Play 07 Lecture on Platinum Availle