The British Society for the History of Science has unveiled the shortlist for the Hughes Prize, with William Collins netting three nominations.
William Collins scored a hat-trick of titles on the five-strong shortlist with Merve Emre's What’s your type?: The Strange History of Myers-Briggs and the Birth of Personality Testing, John Gribbin and Mary Gribbin's Out of the Shadow of a Giant: How Newton Stood on the Shoulders of Hooke and Halley and David Quammen's The Tangled Tree: A Radical New History of Life competing for the £500 prize.
Collecting the World: Hans Sloane and the Origins of the British Museum by James Delbourgo (Harvard University Press) and How to Tame a Fox (and Build a Dog) by Lee Alan Dugatkin and Lyudmila Trut (University of Chicago Press) round off the shortlist.
Chair of judges Dr Jane Gregory said: “The jurors very much enjoyed reading such a wide range of wonderful books about the history of science and selecting five outstanding books for our shortlist. All of our shortlisted authors have applied skilful historical scholarship to producing accessible and fascinating stories that bring our scientific and technological heritage to life. We hope many readers will enjoy them too.”
The BSHS Hughes Prize is awarded every two years to the best book in the history of science that is published in English and accessible to a general audience. It rewards books that bring scholarship to new readers by capturing the public imagination while conforming to the rigorous standards of academic research.
The BSHS Hughes Prize has this year been renamed from the Dingle Prize in memory of the BSHS' much-loved late president Jeff Hughes. Dr Hughes, a renowned science historian at Manchester University, died last year following a serious illness which had forced him into retirement.
The winner will be announced in October.