John Playfair and his books

Annals of Science 40 (2):179-187 (1983)
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John Playfair left a library of over 1,400 volumes at his death. Analysing these augments our understanding of his mind, particularly with regard to geology. Two questions of special import are why this teacher of mathematics was interested in geology at all, and why, having written his Illustrations of the Huttonian theory of the Earth he never completed the proposed second edition of this famous and influential work



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