ARCHIBALD SCOTT COUPER PDF

Archibald Scott Couper was born on March 31, , at Kirkintilloch in Dumbartonshire, Scotland, the son of a prosperous cotton weaver. He commenced his university studies at Glasgow mainly in classics, spent the summer semester of in Berlin, and returned to Scotland to complete his university course in logic and metaphysics at Edinburgh. He spent the period in Berlin and during this time decided to study chemistry. Couper entered the laboratory of Charles Wurtz in Paris in the autumn of and remained there until his return to Scotland in ; during these 2 years he made all his contributions to chemistry: two papers containing experimental contributions and his now famous memoir "On a New Chemical Theory.

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Archibald Scott Couper was born on March 31, , at Kirkintilloch in Dumbartonshire, Scotland, the son of a prosperous cotton weaver. He commenced his university studies at Glasgow mainly in classics, spent the summer semester of in Berlin, and returned to Scotland to complete his university course in logic and metaphysics at Edinburgh.

He spent the period in Berlin and during this time decided to study chemistry. Couper entered the laboratory of Charles Wurtz in Paris in the autumn of and remained there until his return to Scotland in ; during these 2 years he made all his contributions to chemistry: two papers containing experimental contributions and his now famous memoir "On a New Chemical Theory.

He retired to Kirkintilloch and lived there incapable of intellectual work and completely lost to chemistry until his death 34 years later. Early in Couper, then 27 and after only some 3 years' contact with chemistry, asked Wurtz to present Couper's manuscript "On a New Chemical Theory" to the French Academy. Couper protested to Wurtz about his procrastination but was, it is said, shown out of the laboratory.

Couper's paper was, however, finally presented by Jean Baptiste Dumas to the academy on June 14, , and published in the Comptes rendus; fuller versions were subsequently published in English and French.

After pointing out the inadequacy of current theories, Couper wrote in his paper: "I propose to consider the single element carbon. This body is found to have two highly distinguished characteristics: 1 It combines with equal numbers of equivalents of hydrogen, chlorine, oxygen, sulphur, etc.

These two properties, in my opinion, explain all that is characteristic of organic chemistry. This will be rendered apparent as I advance. This second property is, so far as I am aware, here signalized for the first time. Couper also introduced the use of a line to indicate the valence linkage between two atoms and, had he used 16 rather than 8 for the atomic weight of oxygen, his chemical formulas would have been almost identical with those used today.

It is also remarkable that in his paper he represents cyanuric acid by a formula containing a ring of three carbon and three nitrogen atoms joined by valence lines—the first ring formula ever published. But Couper's paper "On a New Chemical Theory" remains a landmark in the history of organic chemistry. By continuing, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Please set a username for yourself. People will see it as Author Name with your public flash cards. Encyclopedia of World Biography. Copyright The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved. Link to this page. Archibald Scott Couper. In YourDictionary. Archibald Scott Couper Images. Also Mentioned In. Scott scotti James Hamilton Couper great-scott. Dred Scott coupee.

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The Tragic Story of a Great Chemist: Archibald Scott Couper (1831-1892)

In he wrote an article listing two fundamental properties of the carbon atom: valence four and the ability of carbon atoms to bind together. In he published another paper in which he defined the hexagonal structure of the benzene molecule. These discoveries gave an extraordinary boost to the chemistry of the nineteenth century. Today they constitute the axioms of organic chemistry.

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Couper, Archibald Scott

Couper was a student at the universities of Glasgow and Paris and became an assistant at the University of Edinburgh. A controversy about priority ensued. Kekule, by contrast, became famous. Couper had never enjoyed sound health, and after the rejection of his achievement he suffered physical and mental reverses and lived in retirement until his death. Archibald Scott Couper. Info Print Cite.

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