What is the Oldest Scientific Journal?

During a recent biostatitics course, the lecturer asked what was the oldest scientific journal in the world.

For most practical purposes, the answer is: The Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society. Available since 1665 and still published.

The Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, or Phil. Trans., is a scientific journal published by the Royal Society. The cover of the first volume is shown on the right.

According to Wikipedia, The Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society begun in 1665 and is the oldest scientific journal printed in the English-speaking world and the second oldest in the world, after the French Journal des s├žavans.

Phil. Trans. is the world's longest running scientific journal.

The use of the word "philosophical" in the title derives from the phrase "natural philosophy", which was the equivalent of what we would now generically call "science".

The first issue, dated 6 March 1665, was published six years after the Royal Society had been founded.

Over the centuries, many important scientific discoveries have been published in the Philosophical Transactions. Famous contributing authors include Isaac Newton, Michael Faraday and Charles Darwin. In 1672, the journal published Newton's first paper New Theory about Light and Colours, which can be seen as the beginning of his public scientific career.

In 1887 the journal expanded to 2 separate publications - A and B:

- A: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Physical, Mathematical and Engineering

- B: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences

Both journals now publish themed issues, and individual research articles are published in the sister journals Proceedings of the Royal Society, called again, A and B.

"B" stands for "Biology," it seems.

Disgust is an evolved psychological system for protection from infection - published in the oldest journal in the world, 2011.
The scientific journal through the centuries - a little bit of history from Health Librarian (HL) Wiki http://buff.ly/WZqP2S
Image source: Wikipedia, public domain.

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