Item 3 - James David Forbes to William Whewell

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Add. MS a/204/3

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James David Forbes to William Whewell

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  • 25 Aug. 1831 (Creation)

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4 pp

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Greenhill, Edinburgh - Thanks WW for his last letter. JDF has forwarded the last part of the Transactions of the Edinburgh Royal Society to the Cambridge Philosophical Society. He has also enclosed an unpublished paper to WW by his friend Dr. Gregory [Duncan Gregory?], and another paper obtained by Mr Robison (Secretary of the Edinburgh Royal Society and son of the late Professor John Robison) by 'a most ingenious artist in Edinburgh' concerned with the escapement of a clock. Perhaps George Airy would like to see it. JDF has been studying Poisson everyday with 'a great deal of pleasure and advantage'. It will be a while before he understands Joseph Fourier's Theorie Analytique de la Chaleur, [1822]. He has begun George Airy's tract on the Calculus of Variations, and been engaged in several enquiries, especially the vibrations of hot metals: 'I have been enabled to arrive at such general laws as will I think demonstrate that Leslie [John Leslie] and Faraday were far wrong in their conjectures'. JDF hopes WW will come to the first meeting of the BAAS at York: 'I have known Dr. Brewster [David Brewster] long enough to be aware that he sometimes takes up particular views with a bigotry which defies conviction, and I am certain that there is no one who can more sincerely regret than myself the most unwarranted attacks he has made upon professors. But how this can affect the York meeting I cannot conceive'. DB will have no superintendence at all of the meeting.

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