Historical Background - Baroque (1600-1750 AD)
1606 AD Andreas Libau publishes Alchemia, the first systematic treatise in chemistry.
1609 Van't Helmont, the last alchemist, the first chemist
1637 René Descartes publishes Discours de la méthode, outlining the four canons of scientific reasoning.
1638 Descartes introduces the concept of an 'aether' filling all of space in order to explain the tides.
1643 Evangelista Torricelli measures atmospheric pressure with his mercury barometer.
1644 Descartes publishes Principia philosophiae, containing the vortex theory of planetary motion and arguments concerning the impossibility of vacua.
1647 Pascal publishes work on vacua, confirming Toricelli’s results.
1648 Pascal uses the barometer to show that the atmosphere has weight.
Jean Baptiste Van Helmont publishes Ortus Medicinae, containing a description of carbon dioxide.
1650 First chemistry laboratory established at Leyden University.
1651 Guericke demonstrates pressure of atmosphere using ‘Magdeburg hemispheres.’
Sealed thermometer invented by Ferdinand II, Grand Duke of Tuscany.
1660 (to 1678) Robert Boyle conducts experiments on gases and studies the effects of combustion and respiration on the atmosphere.
Royal Society of London founded.
1661 Boyle publishes The Sceptical Chymist, defending an atomic theory of chemical reactions.
1662 Boyle’s law (which he did not discover) stated explicitly in the second edition of Boyle’s New Experiments Physico-Mechanical.
1665 Royal Society Secretary begins Philosophical Transactions, the first journal of a strictly scientific nature.
1666 Académie Royale des Sciences founded.
1671 Issac Newton does some chemical research
1675 Robert Boyle publishes first book on electricity: Experiments and Notes About the Mechanical Origine or Production of Electricity.
1678 Christiaan Huygens advances his wave theory of light, fully developed in Traité de la lumière (1690).
1714 Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit invents the mercury glass thermometer.
1723 George Ernst Stahl publishes Fundamenta chymiae dogmaticae et experimentalis, advancing the phlogiston theory (first outlined in 1697). 
1742 Anders Celcius proposes the centigrade thermometer scale.
1745 Petrus van Musschenbroek and Kleist discover the principle of the Leyden jar, in which static electricity charges could be stored (announced by Musschenbroek in 1746).