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Dmitri Mendeleev and a brief history of the chemistry

by @ulaulaman via @smoot_ #Mendeleev #chemistry #periodictable #Lavoisier
The story of the chemistry starting with the first philosophers interested in the atoms, people like Epicurus, Democritus, Kanada. The first chemist, or in other words the first scientist interested in experiments about the reactions between the substances was Jabir Ibn Hayyan. Among his discoveries and inventions we must remember crystallization, calcination, sublimation and evaporation, the acid synthesis and the distillation, using the still, another of his own inventions. In addition to developing methods for the preparation of various metals, he also developed the aqua regia in order to dissolve the gold(1).
The revolution in chemistry occurred at about the same time that it happened in physics with Galileo: Georg Agricola in 1556 wrote De re metallica, a basic book for the metallurgical chemistry. From this moment, a lot of books about chemistry are published: the Tyrocinium Chymicum by Jean Beguin in 1610, the first instructional book on chemistry; The sceptical chimist by Robert Boyle, where for the first time the results of Jabir Ibn Hayyan were disclosed in Europe.
The first modern chemist was Antoine Lavoisier, engaged in a lot of research in the field of chemistry, and one of the martyrs of science, victim of the Reign of Terror during the French Revolution. Newxt to him she was Marie-Anne Pierrette, his wife, which assisted him with the construction of scientific instruments used in his experiments, in particular for the attempt to refute the theory of phlogiston(2), a mysterious entity who runs away from an object when it burns.
The myth of phlogiston was disproved, paving the way for the development of the law of conservation of mass.(2)
And finally it arrives on the scene Dmitri Mendeleev with his periodic table of elements: on the 6th March 1869, Mendeleev propoced to the Russian Chemical Society The Dependence between the Properties of the Atomic Weights of the Elements, that it was republished in the German journal Zeitschrift für Chemie(3). In it, he stated:
  1. The elements, if arranged according to their atomic mass, exhibit an apparent periodicity of properties.
  2. Elements which are similar as regards to their chemical properties have atomic weights which are either of nearly the same value (e.g., Pt, Ir, Os) or which increase regularly (e.g., K, Rb, Cs).
  3. The arrangement of the elements, or of groups of elements in the order of their atomic masses, corresponds to their so-called valencies, as well as, to some extent, to their distinctive chemical properties; as is apparent among other series in that of Li, Be, B, C, N, O, and F.
  4. The elements which are the most widely diffused have small atomic weights.
  5. The magnitude of the atomic weight determines the character of the element, just as the magnitude of the molecule determines the character of a compound body.
  6. We must expect the discovery of many yet unknown elements – for example, elements analogous to aluminium and silicon – whose atomic weight would be between 65 and 75.
  7. The atomic weight of an element may sometimes be amended by a knowledge of those of its contiguous elements. Thus the atomic weight of tellurium must lie between 123 and 126, and cannot be 128.
  8. Certain characteristic properties of elements can be foretold from their atomic masses.

(video and images via @smoot_)

(1) Amr, S., & Tbakhi, A. (2007). Jabir ibn Hayyan Annals of Saudi Medicine, 27 (1) DOI: 10.4103/0256-4947.51533
(2) EAGLE, C., & SLOAN, J. (1998). Marie Anne Paulze Lavoisier: The Mother of Modern Chemistry The Chemical Educator, 3 (5), 1-18 DOI: 10.1007/s00897980249a
(3) Mendeleev, Dmitri (1869). "Ueber die Beziehungen der Eigenschaften zu den Atomgewichten der Elemente". Zeitschrift für Chemie 12: 405–406. (

1 comment:

  1. Woah, I'm actually wearing my Mendeleev shirt as I stumbled upon this! Didn't realize it was his birthday.


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