Cover image for The biographical dictionary of scientists.
The biographical dictionary of scientists.
Porter, Roy, 1946-2002.
Third edition / consultant editors, Roy Porter, Marilyn Ogilvie.
Publication Information:
New York : Oxford University Press, 2000.
Physical Description:
2 volumes (1196 pages) : illustrations, portraits ; 26 cm
v. 1. Abbe to Leavitt -- v. 2. Lebedev to Zworykin.


Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
Q141 .B528 2000 V.1 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize
Q141 .B528 2000 V.2 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize

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The third edition of this acclaimed reference work offers more than 1,280 concise, authoritative portraits of the men and women of science throughout the ages. Covering every field--from astronomy to zoology, the pure sciences as well as engineering and technology, the new edition of the Dictionary features more than 80 new entries that add the richer representation of contemporary and women scientists--such as Stanley Prusiner, winner of the Nobel Prize for medicine, and Sofia Kovalevskaya, the Russian mathematician. The biographies, ranging in length from 500 to 1,200 words, clearly present each scientist's contributions; they also provide fascinating insights into the workings of scientific discovery and validation. TheDictionary features 150 illustrations, updated historical overviews of the major sciences, chronologies, quotations, bibliographies, tables of scientific discoveries and Nobel Prize winners, and an enlarged glossary. Praise for the first edition: "Excellent...recommended."--Reference Books Bulletin "Recommended for all public and academic collections."--Choice "Makes informative and enjoyable reading....a valuable resource."--Mathematics Teacher

Reviews 1

Choice Review

An important responsibility of a reviewer is to warn readers and book purchasers of subtle differences in book titles that can lead to the wrong purchase or to lost time spent on a volume that is different than expected. This book title is a case in point. Luckily, it and Trevor I. Williams's similarly titled A Biographical Dictionary of Scientists (1969; 2nd ed., by Williams and Sonia Withers, CH, Jun'75) are both of value to a science-oriented library. A Biographical Dictionary of Scientists is the older collection of short biographies. The fourth edition (Collins Biographical Dictionary of Scientists, ed. by Williams, 1994) added value by including, for the first time, biographies of living scientists. The first edition of the volume reviewed here first appeared as a series of six volumes--subtitled Biologists (CH, Feb'85), Chemists (CH, Feb'85), Astronomers (CH, Feb'85), Physicists (CH, Feb'85), Engineers and Inventors (CH, Sep'86), and Mathematicians (CH, Jul'86)--edited by David Abbott. Each volume had a historical essay covering the development of the discipline from ancient times to date, A-Z biographical entries of scientists, a glossary of terms used in the volume, and a subject index to individuals listed and mentioned. Both deceased and living scientists were included. This new edition is in one volume, has a new editor who has updated the historical essays, and combines all the scientists into a single alphabetical list. This is a great improvement over the earlier volumes, since the sciences have become so interdisciplinary and cross- interests can be more easily indexed. More than 1,200 scientists are included in this edition. The biographies of deceased scientists have been reprinted from the older edition, regrettably repeating some errors; biographies of living scientists have been updated. The editor has shown a unique sensitivity in the biographies for the contributions of women and the social implications of many of the new scientific endeavors. He has also included lists of Nobel Prize winners in various scientific disciplines and a glossary of more than 2,000 terms. Recommended for all public and academic collections. All levels. R. J. Havlik; emeritus, University of Notre Dame