London: Taylor and Francis, 1852. 1st Edition. FIRST EDITION, HANDSOMELY BOUND EXTRACT OF FRANKLAND’S CONCEPT OF VALENCY, THE CAPACITY OF ATOMS TO COMBINE WITH OTHER ATOMS – A CONCEPT THAT REVOLUTIONIZED MODERN STRUCTURAL CHEMISTRY & THAT LED DIRECTLY TO THE WORK OF MENDELÉEV. Whether accurate or not, a number of historians of science have argued that the notion of valency is one of the most important ideas in the history of science (Philosophy of Chemistry).
In this paper, Edward Frankland (1825 – 1899) introduced the theory that the atoms of each element have a fixed number of bonds they can form with other elements, and this entire capacity must be used. “From novel and highly obscure compounds he had discovered one of the great principles of all chemistry, which came to be known as valency. Although others, particularly August Kekulé, claimed priority for this discovery, Frankland was certainly the first to articulate the concept of what he called ‘combining power’. The results he later communicated to the Royal Society, and they were read to the society's meeting on 10 May 1852. This important paper [offered here] was subsequently published ‘On a new series of organic bodies containing metal’” (Oxford Dictionary of National Biography).
Frankland’s work led “not only to the Kekulé structures, but also to the periodic table of Mendeléev, since that table was based on the regular change of valence with atomic weight."(Asimov). "While Mendeleev is sometimes credited with the invention of the concept of valency, this is incorrect. Frankland “is generally credited with the formulation of the concept, even though many other individuals were instrumental in defining and refining it. By suggesting a link between valency and the inner structure of elements, Mendeleev had uncovered a fundamental characteristic of the atomic world. It opened the door to the second area of research that would provide overwhelming confirmation of the atomic theory – structural chemistry” (Pullman, The Atom in the History of Human Thought, 228). It should be noted as well that Frankland was an initial supporter of Mendeleev’s work. Item #1081
Condition & Details: London: Taylor and Francis. Beautifully bound in half calf over marbled paper. The binding is new but the conservator has purposefully aged its appearance. Fine condition.