Robert Hooke Biography

Robert Hooke was and English scientist born in 1635 and died in the year of 1703. Robert Hooke was born in the town of Freshwater, which is located in the Isle of Write. Hooke was born to a minister named John Hooke. Robert received a great deal of education that did not take place in the classroom. He studied with the portraitist Sir Peter Lely (in his youth). He was educated at the University of Oxford. Then after college he was an assistant of Robert Boyle. He made curator of experiments to the royal society is 1662, and secretary in 1677-88.

Hooke is best known for his theory of elasticity, in Hooke’s law. In 1665 Hooke became professor of Geometry at Gresham College, which he occupied till his death. Despite being a famous scientist, there are no surviving portraits of Hooke. Hooke’s law of elasticity states that the amount an elastic body bends or stretches out of shape (strain) is in direct proportion to the force (stress) acting on it. This law applies as long as the body is still elastic. Increased stress beyond this limit will change the shape of the body permanently.

Robert Hooke had many accomplishments as a scientists the law of elasticity is what he is most well know for. Robert Hooke also was the first person to observe the cells of a plant. Using an early microscope he observed the cells. Hooke took a cork layer of bark from an oak tree and examined it with a microscope that he made. When observing the cells he noticed the compartments looked like the small cells of a monastery, so he decided to call them cells. This is a photo, one of hooke’s early observations.

Hooke’s reputation as a biologist is largely do to the book he wrote called Micrographia, which was published in 1665. In the book Micrographia he started to use the word “cell” and described the features of plant tissues that he was able to observe with his microscope. The word cell gradually caught on with other scientist. Hooke said this about his early observations of the plant cells, “I could exceedingly plainly perceive it to be all perforated and porous, these pores or cells. Robert Hooke had observed the first plant cell, and cell wall. Hooke’s remarkable engineering abilities enabled him to invent and improve many mechanical devices. Devices that he improved or invented included timepieces (for which he invented the spiral spring), the quadrant, he constructed the first Gregorian telescope, and made his own microscopes. Hooke had many ideas, but failed to follow through on most. He formulated the theory of planetary motion as a problem in mechanics.

He grasped the concept, but did not have the mathematics to prove it. Sir Isaac Newton completed Hooke’s work by backing it up with the needed math. Hooke also worked on topics such as the nature of combustion. He created plans of the first steam engine before they ever existed. Another invention he described was a working telegraph system as early as 1684. Hooke was like many scientists of the seventeenth century he worked on many diverse areas of science.


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