‘Broken-hearted’ widow leaves books for Oxfam

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THE Oxfam Bookshop in Thame has landed a windfall of 1,500 scientific texts after the owner of the collection died from a ‘broken heart’.

The books had been compiled by distinguished professor John Ziman who passed away in 2005 aged 80.

His library was inherited by his wife and fellow professor Joan Soloman – who recently died, according to her daughter, from a ‘broken heart’.

A prolific author in his own right, Professor Ziman compiled his collection during a distinguished career in the research of condensed matter physics.

Ziman was born in 1925 and taught at numerous universities including Bristol, Imperial College London and Oxford.

The wordsmith wrote extensively with several of his texts forming the benchmark of his field.

Even today such examples as Electrons and Phonos, Principles of the Theory of Solids and Elements of Advanced Quantum Theory are regarded as gospel in the scientific world. The collection includes many orginals of Ziman’s own work.

Later in his life he wrote extensively on the social implications of science and how scientists should be morally accountable for their work.

The books will be displayed in the shop’s window during the month of September, a key month for other academics and university undergraduates.

Store manager Dick Jennens said: “It was such a sad story. Her daughter said she died of a broken heart.

“The books are rather special and we’re going to put a stand in the window.”

You can call the bookshop on 01844 214645.