Webster 1913 Edition
The science of nature, or of natural objects; that branch of science which treats of the laws and properties of matter, and the forces acting upon it; especially, that department of natural science which treats of the causes (as gravitation, heat, light, magnetism, electricity, etc.) that modify the general properties of bodies; natural philosophy.
☞ Chemistry, though a branch of general physics, is commonly treated as a science by itself, and the application of physical principles which it involves constitute a branch called chemical physics, which treats more especially of those physical properties of matter which are used by chemists in defining and distinguishing substances.
Webster 1828 Edition
1.In the usual and more limited sense, the science of the material system, including natural history and philosophy. This science is of vast extent, comprehending whatever can be discovered of the nature and properties of bodies, their causes, effects, affections, operations, phenomena and laws.