The year 1788 in science and technology involved some significant events.


December 21 - Caroline Herschel discovers the periodic comet 35P/Herschel–Rigollet.


James E. Smith founds the Linnean Society of London.
Thomas Walter publishes Flora Caroliniana, the first flora of North America to follow Linnaean taxonomy.[1]
Gilbert White publishes The Natural History and Antiquities of Selborne, in the County of Southampton (dated 1789), a pioneering observational study of English ecology.

Earth sciences

James Hutton's Theory of the Earth; or an Investigation of the Laws observable in the Composition, Dissolution, and Restoration of Land upon the Globe is published for the first time, in Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.[2]


Lagrange's Mécanique analytique is published in Paris, introducing Lagrangian mechanics.


October 14 - William Symington demonstrates a paddle steamer on Dalswinton Loch in Scotland.[3][4]


Copley Medal: Charles Blagden


March 7 - Antoine César Becquerel, French scientist (d. 1878)
March 22 - Pierre Joseph Pelletier, French chemist (d. 1842)
May 10 - Augustin-Jean Fresnel, French physicist (d. 1827)
14 October 1788, Birth of Edward Sabine in Dublin, Ireland, Anglo Irish physicist, astronomer and explorer (d. 1883)
December 21 - Thomas Southwood Smith, English physician and sanitary reformer (d. 1861)


April 16 - Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon, French naturalist (b. 1707)
May 8 - Giovanni Antonio Scopoli, Italian-Austrian naturalist (b. 1723)
approx. date - Moses Harris, English entomologist and engraver (b. 1730)

14 November 1788 Death of Giovanni Domenico Maraldi in Perinaldo near Imperia, Liguria, Italy

1788 Death of Johann Georg Palitzsch


^ Ward, Daniel B. (2007). "Scientific Note: Quercus sinuata Walter ... Rediscovered and Neotypified". Castanea (Southern Appalachian Botanical Society) 72 (3): 177–181. doi:10.2179/0008-7475(2007)72[177:SNQSWH]2.0.CO;2. Retrieved 2011-04-05.
^ Vol. 1(2) pp. 209–304. Theory of the Earth.
^ Harvey, W. S.; Downs-Rose, G. (1980). William Symington, Inventor and Engine Builder. London: Northgate Publishing. ISBN 0-85298-443-X.
^ Macleod, Innes; Neil, James (1988). The Dalswinton steamboat 1788–1988. Dumfries: Farries. ISBN 0-948278-08-0.

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