Experiments and Observations on Electricity

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Title page of 1751 original publication

Experiments and Observations on Electricity is a treatise by Benjamin Franklin based on letters that he wrote to Peter Collinson, who communicated Franklin's ideas to the Royal Society.[1][2] The letters were published as a book in England in 1751, and over the following years the book was reissued in four more editions containing additional material, the last in 1774.[3] Science historian I. Bernard Cohen crafted an edition with historical commentary that was published in 1941.[1][3][4][5]


  1. ^ a b Guerlac, Henry (1942). "Review of Benjamin Franklin's Experiments: A New Edition of Franklin's Experiments and Observations on Electricity". The New England Quarterly. 15 (1): 158–161. doi:10.2307/360244. ISSN 0028-4866. JSTOR 360244.
  2. ^ Krider, E. Philip (January 2006). "Benjamin Franklin and lightning rods". Physics Today. 59 (1): 42–48. Bibcode:2006PhT....59a..42K. doi:10.1063/1.2180176. ISSN 0031-9228. S2CID 110623159.
  3. ^ a b Jorgenson, Chester E. (1942). "Review of Benjamin Franklin's Experiments. A New Edition of Franklin's "Experiments and Observations on electricity."". American Literature. 14 (2): 184–187. doi:10.2307/2920680. ISSN 0002-9831. JSTOR 2920680.
  4. ^ Wilson, C. T. R. (1943). "Benjamin Franklin's experiments". Nature. 151 (3833): 430–431. Bibcode:1943Natur.151..430W. doi:10.1038/151430a0. S2CID 38717309.
  5. ^ Dauben, J. W.; Gleason, M. L.; Smith, G. E. (2009). "Seven Decades of History of Science: I. Bernard Cohen (1914–2003), Second Editor of Isis". Isis. 100 (1): 4–35. doi:10.1086/597575. PMID 19554868. S2CID 31401544.

Further reading[edit]

  • "Experiments and Observations, [April 1751]". Founders Online. National Archives. Original source: Labaree, Leonard W., ed. (1961). The Papers of Benjamin Franklin, vol. 4, July 1, 1750, through June 30, 1753. Yale University Press. pp. 125–130.
  • Watson, William (1751). "An Account of Mr. Benjamin Franklin's Treatise, Lately Published, Intituled, Experiments and Observations on Electricity, Made at Philadelphia in America; By Wm. Watson, F. R. S.". Philosophical Transactions. 47: 202–211. JSTOR 105044.

External links[edit]