Lectures on Natural Philosophy: The Result of Many Years' Practical Experience of the Facts Elucidated

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Margaret Bryan (c.1760-1816) taught natural science to women at a time when it was largely the preserve of men. She ran a boarding school for girls in Blackheath, London, from 1795 to 1806, and the curriculum included mathematics and sciences - rarely offered to young women. She published her lecture notes on astronomy in 1797, and after their positive reception she decided to undertake another volume of lectures. This resulting work, published in 1806, is a collection of Bryan's lectures on 'natural philosophy', containing thirteen chapters on topics such as mechanics, pneumatics and acoustics, magnetism and electricity. Each chapter provides illustrations, and at the end of the volume there is an appendix with astronomical and geographical questions and exercises, as well as a scientific glossary. These lectures provide a glimpse into the little-known world of women's education towards the end of the Georgian period.