This chapter talks about the most prestigious office Joseph Banks held, which was president of the Royal Society for an unbroken forty-one and a half years from November 1778. It points out that the Royal Society was founded on 28 November 1660 by a committee of twelve natural philosophers following a lecture by Sir Christopher Wren at Gresham College. The chapter recounts how Banks devoted his presidency to the “Scientific Service of the People.” It explores Bank's advocacy of the Baconian ideal about a strong partnership between government and science. It also highlights Banks's efforts to advance governmental patronage of science by demonstrative applications of the usefulness of science to the state's advantage.
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