Part 1 The 1660s in context: the scientific context; the political context; the context of patronage. Part 2 The foundation of the Academie des Sciences and its first: Colbert and the foundation of the academie in 1666; the founder members of the Academie des Sciences - those with backgrounds in law; Roberval and Duclos; the majority - academicians in their 40s; the Eleves; the founder members in retrospect. Part 3 Members of the academie, 1666-1698: the early years of the academie; the members appointed 1669-1698 - the period to 1683; dynasticism in the academie - the La Hire family; the members appointed by Louvois, 1683-1691; Pontchartrain and membership to 1698 - the first phase - Bignon, Homberg and Tournefort; Pontchartrain and membership to 1698 the second phase; the formation, social status and mentality of an academician, 1666-1699. Part 4 The reform of 1699: principles and statutes, 1699; the academicians of 1699 - the mathematical sciences, the life sciences; Parisian apothecaries in the academie of 1699 - Gilles-Francois Boulduc and the Geoffroy family; the members of 1699 in context. Part 5 The academie after 1700: the secretaries and Bignon; academicians in the mathematical sciences, 1702-1750; academicians in the life sciences, 1701-1750.
Thoroughly researched, a veritable treasure trove of biographical information. BRITISH JOURNAL FOR THE HISTORY OF SCIENCE Vividly depicts real people struggling with the financial problems of everyday life and the peculiar social system of Louis XIV's France... a significant contribution to the scholarly literature concerning the Academy and the evolving social status of French men of science at the dawn of the eighteenth century. AMERICAN HISTORICAL REVIEW Sturdy's assured grasp of the political and cultural complexities of early modern Europe will prove valuable to any reader interested in the relations between absolutism and intellectual culture in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. FRENCH HISTORY A fine book which deserves readers of several sorts... history of science, sociology of the past or French history. CANADIAN JOURNAL OF HISTORY