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Royal Society Journal Collection: Science in the making


Richard Waller, ‘A Catalogue of Simple and Mixt Colours, with a specimen of Each colour prefix to its proper name’, PT 16, 1686

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This collection is also available for your institution to own with extra features. If you think your institution would benefit from purchasing the collection please recommend to your librarian or you can find out more on our archive purchasing page.

Since the first issue of Philosophical Transactions was published by the Secretary of the Royal Society, in 1665, the Royal Society has covered some of the most fundamental and significant discoveries in scientific history.

For the first time, high quality full colour images of the original Royal Society Journals from 1665 to 1996 are available online. This includes annotations, illustrations, and additional material that have so far only been available to people visiting our library.

Improved metadata means the collection is now easier to search, helping you to navigate through over 350 years of science in the making. 

Royal Society Journal Collection: Science in the making

  • Content highlights

    Must read articles from the collection.

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  • Benjamin Franklin

    Benjamin Franklin was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1756, here we collect some of his work.

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  • Glassworkers

    This collection demonstrates the diverse outputs resulting from research on optics and ophthalmology conducted by a Royal Society committee.


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  • Thomas Henry Huxley

    Articles by T. H. Huxley who served as President of the Royal Society 1883–1885.

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  • Kathleen Lonsdale

    The life and work of one of the first women elected to the Royal Society.

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  • Meteorology: a citizen science

    Weather observations were sent to the Royal Society and abstracted in the journal from a variety of geographical locations, by famous and anonymous contributors. 

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  • Isaac Newton

    Articles by Isaac Newton who served as President of the Royal Society 1703–1727.

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History of science blog posts