Remarks on Certain Statements Regarding the Invention of the Steam Engine, in M. Arago's Historical Eloge of James Watt

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Robert Stuart & Company, 1840 - Steam-engines - 68 pages

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Page 3 - Damn with faint praise, assent with civil leer, And without sneering, teach the rest to sneer, Willing to wound, and yet afraid to strike ; Just hint a fault and hesitate dislike...
Page 61 - Watt was a comment on the text I have chosen, — the value of observation. Of the importance of the inventions of James Watt well may Arago, in his Eloge, speak as follows : " We have long been in the habit of talking of the age of Augustus and of the age of Louis XIV. Eminent individuals amongst us have likewise held that we might with propriety speak of the age of Voltaire, Rousseau, and Montesquieu. I do not hesitate to declare my conviction, that when the immense services already rendered by...
Page 35 - Iris only object — was to determine experimentally the relative volumes of water and steam; that in the small apparatus he employed for this purpose, the steam could not elevate the liquid, according to the author's own account, above a few inches ; and that in the whole description of the experiment, there is not a single word that conveys the idea that Porta was aware of the power of this agent, or of the possibility of applying it to the production of a useful working machine.
Page 28 - On this side, again, we maintain that it belongs to a humble engineer, almost forgotten by our biographers, namely, Solomon de Caus, who was born at Dieppe, or in its neighbourhood.
Page 61 - This, gentlemen, is a very abridged sketch of the benefits bequeathed to the world, by the machine of which PAPIN supplied, the germ in his writings, and which, after so many ingenious exertions, WATT carried to such admirable perfection.
Page 44 - I approach this inquiry with the firm determination of being impartial — with the most earnest solicitude to bestow on every improver the credit which is his due — and with the fullest conviction that I am a stranger to every consideration unworthy of the commission that you have conferred on me, or beneath the dignity of science originating in national prejudices. I declare, on the other hand, that I esteem very lightly the innumerable decisions which have...
Page 26 - MIL, discovered that an iron-ball, or bomb, with very thick walls, and filled with water, exploded sooner or later when thrown into the fire, if its mouth were closed, or, in other words, if you prevented the free escape of the steam as it was generated. The power of steam was here demonstrated by a precise proof, which, to a certain point, was susceptible of numerical appreciation, t whilst at the same time it revealed itself as a dreadful means of destruction.
Page 28 - M. Arago has claimed for France the invention of the steam engine. The English, he observes in his Memoir of Watt, have ascribed the honor to the Marquis of Worcester ; but on this side the channel, "we maintain that it belongs to a humble engineer, almost forgotten by our biographers, viz. Solomon de Caus." And in his 'History of the Steam Engine,' he asserts that " the idea of raising water by the elastic force of steam" belongs to the same individual.
Page 29 - M. Arago is not entitled to complain of English writers for having " aimed at expunging every French name from this important chapter in the history of science." He says they at once gave up Lord Worcester's claims on discovering that Salomon de Caus had preceded him. Now both Mr. Farey and Mr. Stuart have done ample justice to Caus in their works on the steam engine. As for Lord Worcester, Mr. Stuart (whose history is far from accurate on this point) has both...
Page 39 - an invention, at which the immortal author of the primary and true principles of statics and hydrostatics would have been astonished.

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