Dr. Kendall is Dean of the Faculty of Science in the University of Edinburgh. Both his scientific and his narrative abilities have helped him write a fine introduction to the man who invented laughing gas and the safety lamp. Very definite in his recreation of character as well as accomplishment, Kendall puts life into the factors that made Davy what he was. Lazy and playful when he was young, Davy's indolence turned to industry when he began to study his bent- science- and for himself he mapped out a formidable plan for an education that made him a proficient humanitarian as well. Success came early and with it the sponsoring of Michael Faraday as a promising young physicist. Coupled with perceptive reference to Davy's not always happy personal life, the recounting of his work and its meaning for the world accounts for a remarkable personality. For Davy was a poet and a philosopher too who could view his own times with the breadth usually attained by posterity. Good reading.