The Royal Society

About the project

The Royal Society has been publishing scientific journals for over 350 years, in 2017 we digitised all our content from 1665-1996. Now we want to make it easier for you to discover and use material related to the Royal Society journals, to facilitate academic discussion around the History of Science, and to help you to find historical data to support your research.

We have started with a selection of items (such as peer-review, citizen science, explorations) that demonstrate the breadth of the archive so that you can see how the journals evolved. These are full-colour images, each a high quality scan of the original item held in our physical archives. Each item has descriptive information to facilitate discovery and contribute to continuing academic research.

How to take part

To help us improve and develop this site while you explore the archive of science:

  • Navigate through the site and tell us what you think.
  • Create your own account and save your own collections.
  • Interact with the archival items by tagging the content with words that explain what you see.
    This will enrich the links between documents and improve our understanding of the archive.
  • Try your hand at deciphering the handwriting of Newton, Darwin and other scientists by transcribing their letters. Transcriptions of handwritten documents make the texts machine-readable and improve the discoverability of historical resources. Please read our Transcribing and Commenting guidelines
  • Are you a teacher or lecturer in palaeography or the history of science? Get in touch.
  • Are you a library interested in purchasing access to the collections published by the Royal Society? Find out more and get in touch.
  • Is your organisation interested in helping fund this project? Contact us for more information.
  • Does your organisation have related content they would like included? Let us know

Find out more about The Royal Society.

If you would like high-resolution reproductions of the illustrations and discover more content, visit our Picture Library.

This platform was developed by Digirati Ltd – discover their development journey through their project blog.

Terms of Use

Content is freely available on Science in the Making website, however, please note that uses are restricted.

  • Academic and teaching re-use is encouraged and not restricted. Please make it clear that Science in the Making and the Royal Society Collections is the source of the material. If you are using the website for a large project, we would love to hear more, so please contact us.
  • You are not permitted to incorporate any content or other material appearing on this Science in the Making website into any commercial work or publication in any form and no such content or material may be: (i) distributed, published or communicated to the public for commercial purposes; or (ii) reproduced or stored in any electronic database or archive, without our prior written permission.