In the early discoveries people of ancient greece and china discovered a lodestone (the natural form of a magnet). Through experiments they found out that a lodestone would always point in a north-south direction if it was allowed to rotate freely. They applied this charistic of the lodestones to navigation, fortune telling, and a guide for building.
North and south poles
In 1263 Pierre de maricourt a french solidure mapped the magnetic field of a lodestone with a compass. He discovered that a magnet had two magnetic poles North and South poles. In the 1600's Willam Gilbert concluded that the earth itself is a giant magnet with north and south poles.
Magnets and Electricity
In 1820 a danish physicist and chemist Hans Christian discovered that when an electric current flows through a wire it causes the compass needle to rotate. This proved that magnetism and electricity were related. Also in 1820 Andre Marie a french physicist worked out the mathematical relationship between the current of electricity and the strength of th magnetic field. He also had a theory that the electric current in atoms had a magnetic field.
In 1830 Micheal Faraday an english scientist and Joseph henery an american ohysicist discovered that a changing magnetic field produced a current in a coil of wire.
Modern research onMagnets Today
Pierre curie discovered that magnets loose their magnetism above a certain temperature which became known as the Curie point. In the early 1900's a lot of physicists began exploring the behaivor of electrons and other particles in a magnet which became known as quantum mechanics. Also the understanding of magnetic properties of atoms and molecues.
In the 1900's Edward M Purcell and flix Bloch both american physicists developed a way to measure the magnetic field of the nuclei. This discovery led to MRI also known as Magnetic Renosance Imaging.
In the 1960's and 1970's scientists...