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Announcing Dr Bill Eaton of Georgia Southern University as a speaker at the Boyle Summer School.

Boyle regarded his time in Ireland as being scientifically unproductive, a view which is often found in discussions about Boyle. Dr Eaton's recent research into the area has challenged this idea, arguing that it was in fact a formative period in his life.

 

“A country where chemical spirits were so misunderstood and chemical instruments so unprocurable that it was hard to have any Hermetic thoughts in it”. This comment is often seen as summarising Boyle's attitude to Ireland and the time he spent here. However, despite the apparent difficulties Boyle had in getting chemical apparatus in Ireland, the notion that he didn't develop any ideas during this time has recently been challenged by Dr Bill Eaton.

Dr Eaton has been investigating Boyle's relationship to Sir William Petty, a man best known for the surveying techniques he developed in Ireland. Boyle and Petty collaborated on a few occasions, mostly to involving dissections, leading to some significant advances for Boyle's understanding of Biology.