Saturday, June 19, 2010

Nicolas Lémery and "spiky" atoms

Nicolas Lémery
November 17th, 1645 to June 19th, 1715

An early empiricist. His "corpuscular theory" was sophomoric but inventive.

French chemist and pharmacist who prepared a comprehensive dictionary of pharmaceuticals in the Pharmacopée universelle (1697) and the Traité des drogues simples (1698). He also gave popular lectures on chemistry. His Traité de l'antimoine (1707), contains the results of his investigation into the properties and preparations of mineral antimony. His chemistry textbook, Cours de chymie (Paris, 1675), went through 31 editions by 1756. He classified compounds as animal, vegetable or mineral in origin, and explained chemical activity in mechanistic terms (ex. he supposed that "spiky" atoms were associated with acidity and porous atoms with alkalinity, the two fitting together when a chemical reaction took place).

Nicolas Lémery [Wikipedia]

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