Updated 19 Mar 2007
WIRKSWORTH Parish Records 1600-1900
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Rev. Abraham Bennet 1749-1799
Abraham Bennet, Curate of Wirksworth 1776-1799, was perhaps the foremost man of science produced by this Derbyshire Parish. He was a member of the Lunar Society, in 1789 published his chief work "New Experiments on Electricity", and was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society. More information is listed below.
A memorial in the vestry of Wirksworth Parish Church sums up his life:
An outline Pedigree is:
Link to Page
Description of Page
"New Experiments on Electricity"
A full transcription of "New Experiments on Electricity", published by Bennet in 1789. Contains description of his inventions of gold-leaf electroscope, doubler of electricity and his theory of electricity. Contains 141 pages, 4 plates, list of 408 subscribers, and description of 157 experiments and 50 observations
Description of a new Electrometer
In a letter from the Rev. Abraham Bennet, MA to the
Rev. Joseph Priestly, LLD, FRS, Sept 14, 1786.
Account of a Doubler of Electricity
Communicated to the Royal Society by the Rev Richard Kaye,
LLD, FRS on 1787 May 10.
Full transcription of Bennet's "Notebook" containing extracts from books, periodicals and newspapers demonstrating the thought processes of a man of the 18th century 'well versed in different branches of Natural Philosophy'
Recommendation by the Lunar Society, leading to Bennet's election to the Royal Society in 1789. Contains 10 signatures.
"A Derbyshire Electrician"
An article about the achievements of Abraham Bennet by Dr Colin Pounder.
"A Provincial Electrician"
An appreciation of Abraham Bennet's works by Dr Paul Elliott, of Nottingham University. This article was published by the Royal Society.
An oil painting of Bennet from Wirksworth Parish Church, and Bennet's handwriting from the Parish Registers.
Links to Websites mentioning Bennet and his work, in English and many with images of apparatus.
Email received containing information about Bennet and his background, published with the approval of the sender.
Transcribed, compiled, formatted, hyperlinked, encoded,
and copyright © 2005, John Palmer,