NH Articles/Books

Books and Articles written on the topic of natural history (off-site links and on-site articles)

General articles:

Milestones in Natural History from “The History of Information” website of Jeremy Norman

Classic Natural History Books and articles from the 17th and 18th Century:

Books by John (W)Ray

The Wisdom of God manifested in the works of the Creation: viz. The heavenly Bodies elements, meteors, fossils, vegetables, animals … more particularly in the Body of the Earth, its figure, motion and consisting ..   1735, 10th Edition available for Free from Google books.   Like many books of the 17th century if the book was popular the author continued to re-edit and issue new editions.  This is a later edition published after the death of Ray.   Certainly a classic and was heavily plagiarized later by William Paley in “Natural Theology”

Three physico-theological discourses, concerning the primitive Chaos, and creation of the world 1738.  A very important book in which some of Ray’s thought regarding the origins of the earth are found.

Articles about John Ray

  • Mickel, Clarence E. 1973.  John Ray: Indefatigable student of nature.  Annual Review of Entomology 1973: 18: 1-17.
  • Brooke, John H. 2000.  “Wise men nowadays think otherwise”: John Ray, natural theology and the meaning of anthropocentrism.  Notes Rec. R. Soc. Lond.  54(2): 199-213.
  • McMahon, Susan. 2000.  John Ray (1627-1705) and the Act of Uniformity 1662.  Notes Rec. R. Soc. Lond. 54(2): 153-178.

Other important authors:

Robert Plot The natural history of Oxford-shire: being an essay towards the natural history of England  1705

Woodward: Natural History of Fossils of EnglandJohn Woodward An Attempt towards a natural history of the fossils of England, Volume 1  1729

Articles pertaining young earth creationism and its relationship to past natural historians:

History of the Collapse of “Flood Geology” and a Young Earth  by Davis Young (Ph.D)

Natural Theology and the origins of intelligent design:

The Bridgewater Treatises – A series of books/treatises commissioned by the Earl of Bridewater and published from 1833 to 1840. They are considered representative of the natural theology of the 19th century.  Below are links to the eight primary publications.

The Adaptation of External Nature to the Moral and Intellectual Condition of Man, by Thomas Chalmers, D. D.
On The Adaptation of External Nature to the Physical Condition of Man
, by John Kidd, M. D.
Astronomy and General Physics considered with reference to Natural Theology
, by William Whewell, D. D.
The hand, its Mechanism and Vital Endowments as evincing Design
, by Sir Charles Bell.
Animal and Vegetable Physiology, Considered with Reference to Natural Theology Animal and Vegetable Physiology considered with reference to Natural Theology
, by Peter Mark Roget.
Geology and Mineralogy considered with reference to Natural Theology
, by William Buckland, D.D.
The Habits and Instincts of Animals with reference to Natural Theology
, Vol. 2, by William Kirby.
Chemistry, Meteorology, and the Function of Digestion, considered with reference to Natural Theology
, by William Prout, M.D.

The “Scriptural Geologist” and modern creationism:

History of the Collapse of “Flood Geology” and a Young Earth  by Davis Young (Ph.D)

Follies of the Present Day Scriptural Geology from 1817-1857  John Lynch (Ph.D)

Young-Earth Creationists in Early Nineteenth-Century Britain? Towards a reassessment of “Scriptural Geology”  (PDF)  by Ralph O’Conner

Essential bibliography of works by scriptural (Mosaic) geologists (information from Wikipedia):


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