Cover image for The man who changed everything : the life of James Clerk Maxwell
The man who changed everything : the life of James Clerk Maxwell
Mahon, Basil.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Chichester, West Sussex, England : Wiley, 2003.
Physical Description:
xx, 226 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, portraits ; 23 cm

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
QC16.M4 M346 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



This is the first biography in twenty years of James Clerk Maxwell, one of the greatest scientists of our time and yet a man relatively unknown to the wider public. Approaching science with a freshness unbound by convention or previous expectations, he produced some of the most original scientific thinking of the nineteenth century - and his discoveries went on to shape the twentieth century.

Author Notes

Basil Mahon is a former officer in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers and a graduate in Engineering. He is a retired Government Civil Servant and ran the 1991 census in England and Wales. He has a long-time passion for the physical sciences and has for many years been fascinated by the impact that Maxwell has had on all our lives

Table of Contents

List of illustrationsp. ix
Prefacep. xi
Acknowledgementsp. xiii
Chronology: principal events in Maxwell's lifep. xv
Cast of characters: Maxwell's relations and close friendsp. xix
Introductionp. 1
1 A country boy: Glenlair 1831 - 1841p. 4
2 Pins and string: Edinburgh Academy 1841 - 1847p. 11
3 Philosophy: Edinburgh University 1847 - 1850p. 23
4 Learning to juggle: Cambridge 1850 - 1854p. 35
5 Blue and yellow make pink: Cambridge 1854 - 1856p. 48
6 Saturn and statistics: Aberdeen 1856 - 1860p. 69
7 Spinning cells: London 1860 - 1862p. 90
8 The beautiful equations: London 1862 - 1865p. 111
9 The Laird at home: Glenlair 1865 - 1871p. 128
10 The Cavendish: Cambridge 1871 - 1879p. 147
11 Last daysp. 171
12 Maxwell's legacyp. 176
Notesp. 186
Bibliographyp. 212
Indexp. 215