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Soap-Bubbles and the Forces Which Mould Them   By: (1855-1944)

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First Page:

SOAP BUBBLES

AND THE

FORCES WHICH MOULD THEM.

[Illustration: Experiment for showing by intermittent light the apparently stationary drops into which a fountain is broken up by the action of a musical sound. ( See page 109.)]

SOAP BUBBLES

AND THE

FORCES WHICH MOULD THEM.

BEING A COURSE OF THREE LECTURES

DELIVERED IN THE THEATRE OF THE LONDON INSTITUTION ON THE AFTERNOONS OF DEC. 30, 1889, JAN. 1 AND 3, 1890, BEFORE A JUVENILE AUDIENCE.

BY

C. V. BOYS, A.R.S.M., F.R.S.,

ASSISTANT PROFESSOR OF PHYSICS AT THE ROYAL COLLEGE OF SCIENCE, SOUTH KENSINGTON.

PUBLISHED UNDER THE DIRECTION OF THE GENERAL LITERATURE COMMITTEE.

SOCIETY FOR PROMOTING CHRISTIAN KNOWLEDGE, LONDON: NORTHUMBERLAND AVENUE, W.C.; 43, QUEEN VICTORIA STREET, E.C. BRIGHTON: 129, NORTH STREET. New York: E. & J. B. YOUNG & CO. 1896.

TO

G. F. RODWELL,

THE FIRST

SCIENCE MASTER APPOINTED AT MARLBOROUGH COLLEGE,

This Book is Dedicated

BY THE AUTHOR

AS A TOKEN OF ESTEEM AND GRATITUDE,

AND IN THE HOPE THAT

IT MAY EXCITE IN A FEW YOUNG PEOPLE SOME SMALL

FRACTION OF THE INTEREST AND ENTHUSIASM WHICH

HIS ADVENT AND HIS LECTURES AWAKENED

IN THE AUTHOR, UPON WHOM THE LIGHT

OF SCIENCE THEN SHONE FOR

THE FIRST TIME.

PREFACE.

I would ask those readers who have grown up, and who may be disposed to find fault with this book, on the ground that in so many points it is incomplete, or that much is so elementary or well known, to remember that the lectures were meant for juveniles, and for juveniles only. These latter I would urge to do their best to repeat the experiments described. They will find that in many cases no apparatus beyond a few pieces of glass or india rubber pipe, or other simple things easily obtained are required. If they will take this trouble they will find themselves well repaid, and if instead of being discouraged by a few failures they will persevere with the best means at their disposal, they will soon find more to interest them in experiments in which they only succeed after a little trouble than in those which go all right at once. Some are so simple that no help can be wanted, while some will probably be too difficult, even with assistance; but to encourage those who wish to see for themselves the experiments that I have described, I have given such hints at the end of the book as I thought would be most useful.

I have freely made use of the published work of many distinguished men, among whom I may mention Savart, Plateau, Clerk Maxwell, Sir William Thomson, Lord Rayleigh, Mr. Chichester Bell, and Prof. Rücker. The experiments have mostly been described by them, some have been taken from journals, and I have devised or arranged a few. I am also indebted to Prof. Rücker for the use of various pieces of apparatus which had been prepared for his lectures.

SOAP BUBBLES, AND THE FORCES WHICH MOULD THEM.

I do not suppose that there is any one in this room who has not occasionally blown a common soap bubble, and while admiring the perfection of its form, and the marvellous brilliancy of its colours, wondered how it is that such a magnificent object can be so easily produced.

I hope that none of you are yet tired of playing with bubbles, because, as I hope we shall see during the week, there is more in a common bubble than those who have only played with them generally imagine.

The wonder and admiration so beautifully portrayed by Millais in a picture, copies of which, thanks to modern advertising enterprise, some of you may possibly have seen, will, I hope, in no way fall away in consequence of these lectures; I think you will find that it will grow as your knowledge of the subject increases. You may be interested to hear that we are not the only juveniles who have played with bubbles. Ages ago children did the same, and though no mention of this is made by any of the classical authors, we know that they did, because there is an Etruscan vase in the Louvre in Paris of the greatest antiquity, on which children are represented blowing bubbles with a pipe... Continue reading book >>




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