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Paper, 'An account of a hurricane in which the polarity of the needle was changed', communicated by Sir Isaac Newton

Reference number: CLP/4i/39

Date: 1683

Description

On July 24 1681, the ship called the Albemarle, of which Mr Edward Lad was then Master, being a hundred leagues from Cape Cod [USA], in Latitude 48d. about 3h. p. m. met with a thunder storm; the lightning burnt the main-top-sail, split the main cap in pieces, rent the mast all along; There was in special one dreadful clap of thunder, in report bigger then of a great gun, at which all the ships company were amazed, then did there fall something from the clouds, upon the stern of the boat, which broke into many small parts, split one of the pumps ; the other pump much hurt also. It was a bituminous matter, smelling much like fired gun-powder: It continued burning in the stern of the boat; they did with sticks dissipate it, and poured much water on it, and yet they were not able by all that they could do, to extinguish it, until such time as all the matter was consumed.

Subject: Meteorology / Magnetism

Published in Philosophical Transactions as 'A relation of the effect of a thunder clap on the compass of a Ship on the coast of New England'

Read to the Royal Society on 12 March 1683. The account was originally communicated by Mr Robert Southwell.

Reference number
CLP/4i/39
Earliest possible date
1683
Physical description
Ink on paper
Page extent
3 pages
Format
Manuscript

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Citation

Paper, 'An account of a hurricane in which the polarity of the needle was changed', communicated by Sir Isaac Newton, 1683, CLP/4i/39, The Royal Society Archives, London, https://makingscience.royalsociety.org/items/clp_4i_39/paper-an-account-of-a-hurricane-in-which-the-polarity-of-the-needle-was-changed-communicated-by-sir-isaac-newton, accessed on 29 May 2024

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  • Classified Papers

    Dates: 1592-1741

    The 'Classified Papers' of the Royal Society are papers from British and international natural philosophers and scholars categorised according to subject areas.

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