Traveling with the Atom

Allegheny College

(compiled by Dr.Glen E. Rodgers)




Jöns Jacob Berzelius
Swedish Chemist

Contribution to the Development of the Atomic Concept
One of Sweden's most famous chemists, Berzelius was responsible (1813) for devising the modern symbols of the elements.  He discovered selenium (1817), silicon (1824) and thorium (1828) and was a co-discoverer (with Klaproth & Hisinger) of cerium (1803).  He also directed the work of Johan Arfwedson when the latter discovered the element lithium in 1817.  He divided all compounds into either organic and inorganic, coined the terms "isomer" and "isomerism"; determined the atomic weights of nearly all the elements known at the time, wrote an extremely well-regarded multivolume textbook, and generally was the most influential chemist of his time.

Web Sources of Biographical Information
Woodrow Wilson Biography Page

Selected Biographical Books, Sections of Books, and Articles
Full biographical information on Sacks' book Uncle Tungsten p 152 and 197
Full biographical information on Asimov's Biographical Encyclopedia of Science and Technology, 2nd Ed. pp 288-289
Jöns Berzelius on chemical symbols and formulas (1814). Enlightenment Science in the Romantic Era : The Chemistry of Berzelius and Its Cultural Setting (Uppsala Studies in History of Science, V. 10)
by Evan Marc Melhado (Editor), Tore Frangsmyr (Editor)

Some Scientific/Historical Traveling Sites
Berzelius Museum*
The museum used to be located on the grounds of the Swedish Royal Academy of Science on the north side of Stockholm, Sweden.  The museum was closed in January of 2001 and, at this writing, plans were in the works to move the museum to a different site and reopen it in 2004.
Berzelius Park*, Stockholm
This beautiful park is near the Royal Theatre in Stockholm.
* see following Rodgers link to scientific/historical sites for further information.
(1) Taken from The Scientific Traveler, Charles Tanford and Jacqueline, John Wiley & Sons, NY (1992).
(2) Taken from A Travel Guide to Scientific Sites of the British Isles, Charles Tanford and Jacqueline Reynolds, John Wiley & Sons, NY (1995).
(3) Taken from Guide of Eurpoean Museums with collections on History of Chemistry, compiled by Jan W. van Spronsen, Federation of European Societies, Antwerp (1996)

Link to Dr. Rodgers' Scientific/Historical Site on Berzelius.

Return Buttons (Click to return)
 Scientific Historical Traveling Rodgers Home Page