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First of several linked files, telling the early history of the compass (discovered in China) and how Robert Norman in 1581 showed the magnetic force was not horizontal but slanted downwards, followed by William Gilbert's demonstration that the Earth behaved like a giant magnet; two reviews of Gilbert's 1600 book "De Magnete" follow, as well as a modern version of one of Gilbert's experiments. The web collection also includes several sections for science teachers.
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