Graduation Year

2009

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.A.

Degree Granting Department

History

Major Professor

Philip Levy. Ph.D

Keywords

Gold, Martin Frobisher, Metallurgy, Alchemy, North America

Abstract

This paper looks at the emerging conflict between natural philosophy and empirical science in the late sixteenth century by examining the events surrounding the supposed discovery of gold in northern North America by Martin Frobisher in 1577. The discovery of gold in a region thought incapable of producing the metal, and the subsequent assays of ore mined from that region served as a catalyst for conflict between different understandings of the natural world. Proponents of natural philosophy and empirical science each used their theoretical tools to prove or disprove the value of the ore, reflecting the larger discussions taking place about the nature of the natural world.

Share

COinS