Bulletin for the History of Chemistry

The Bulletin for the History of Chemistry is a peer-reviewed scientific journal that publishes articles on the history of chemistry. The journal is published by the History of Chemistry Division of the American Chemical Society.

Bulletin for the History of Chemistry
DisciplineHistory of science
History of chemistry
Edited byCarmen J. Giunta
Publication details
Publication history
Standard abbreviations
Bull. Hist. Chem.
OCLC no.20575996
1811 in science

The year 1811 in science and technology involved some significant events, listed below.

Anna Volkova

Anna Feodorovna Volkova (Russian: Анна Федоровна Волкова, d. 1876), was a Russian chemist working predominantly with amides. During the late 1860s, she was educated in chemistry through public lectures at St. Petersburg University. She was the first woman to graduate as a chemist (1870), the first woman member of the Russian Chemical Society, the first Russian woman to publish a chemical work, and regarded as the first woman at all to publish her own chemical research from a modern chemical laboratory.From 1869, she worked in the laboratory of Alexander Nikolayevich Engelhardt. She led practical courses for female students in St. Petersburg under the tutelage of Dmitri Mendeleev. In 1870, she was the first chemist to prepare pure orthotoluenesulfonic acid and its acid chloride and amide. She was also the first to prepare paratricresol phosphate, a component of a now-important plasticizer, from para-cresol.One of the craters of Venus is named after her.

Chemical Society

The Chemical Society was formed in 1841 (then named the Chemical Society of London) by 77 scientists as a result of increased interest in scientific matters. Chemist Robert Warington was the driving force behind its creation.

Christopher Kelk Ingold

Sir Christopher Kelk Ingold (28 October 1893 – 8 December 1970) was a British chemist based in Leeds and London. His groundbreaking work in the 1920s and 1930s on reaction mechanisms and the electronic structure of organic compounds was responsible for the introduction into mainstream chemistry of concepts such as nucleophile, electrophile, inductive and resonance effects, and such descriptors as SN1, SN2, E1, and E2. He also was a co-author of the Cahn–Ingold–Prelog priority rules. Ingold is regarded as one of the chief pioneers of physical organic chemistry.


Eucaine is a chemical that was previously used as a local anaesthetic as an analogue of cocaine. It is a white, crystalline solid.

It can have two forms, alpha-eucaine, or beta-Eucaine (betacain). The brand name Betacaine can sometimes refer to a preparation containing lignocaine, not eucaine.

Prior to World War one Britain imported beta-Eucaine from Germany. During the war a team including Jocelyn Field Thorpe and Martha Annie Whiteley managed to develop a synthesis in Britain.

Friedrich Ernst Dorn

Friedrich Ernst Dorn (27 July 1848 – 16 December 1916) was a German physicist who was the first to discover that a radioactive substance, later named radon, is emitted from radium.

Jocelyn Field Thorpe

Sir Jocelyn Field Thorpe FRS (1 December 1872 – 10 June 1940) was an English chemist who discovered the Thorpe reaction and the Thorpe-Ingold effect.Born in London on 1 December 1872, one of nine children and the sixth son, of Mr. and Mrs. W.G. Thorpe of the Middle Temple. He attended Worthing College, King's College, London, and the Royal College of Science. He earned his Ph.D. in organic chemistry under Viktor Meyer at the Heidelberg University. Britain adopted a tear gas ethyl iodoacetate, in January 1915 after it was identified by Jocelyn Thorpe, professor of organic chemistry at Imperial College, University of London, which was codenamed ‘SK’ after the South Kensington location. During the war he also worked with Martha Annie Whiteley on the development of syntheses of drugs that had previously been imported from Germany.

Laura Alberta Linton

Laura Alberta Linton (8 April 1853 – 1 April 1915) was an American chemist and physician.

Martha Annie Whiteley

Martha Annie Whiteley (11 November 1866 – 24 May 1956) was an English chemist and mathematician. She was instrumental in advocating for women's entry into the Chemical Society, and was best known for her dedication to advancing women's equality in the field of chemistry. She is identified as one of the Royal Society of Chemistry's 175 Faces of Chemistry.

Mary Elvira Weeks

Mary Elvira Weeks (1892–1975) was an American chemist and science historian who wrote Discovery of the Elements.

Mendeleev's predicted elements

Dmitri Mendeleev published a periodic table of the chemical elements in 1869 based on properties that appeared with some regularity as he laid out the elements from lightest to heaviest. When Mendeleev proposed his periodic table, he noted gaps in the table and predicted that as-then-unknown elements existed with properties appropriate to fill those gaps. He named them eka-boron, eka-aluminium and eka-silicon, with respective atomic masses of 44, 68, and 72.

Nascent state (chemistry)

Nascent state or in statu nascendi (Lat. newly formed moiety: in the state of being born or just emerging), is an obsolete theory in chemistry. It refers to the form of a chemical element (or sometimes compound) in the instance of their liberation or formation. Often encountered are atomic oxygen (Onasc), nascent hydrogen (Hnasc), and similar forms of chlorine (Clnasc) or bromine (Brnasc).

The concept of a "nascent state" was developed to explain the observation that gases generated in situ are frequently more reactive than identical chemicals that have been stored for an extended period of time. First usage of the term was in work by Joseph Priestley around 1790. Auguste Laurent expanded on the theory in the mid 19th century.Constantine Zenghelis hypothesized in 1920 that the increased reactivity of the "nascent" state was due to the fine dispersion of the molecules, not their status as free atoms. Still popular in the early 20th century, the nascent state theory was recognized as declining by 1942.A 1990 review noted that the term was still found as a passing mention in contemporary textbooks. The review summarized that the increased activity observed is actually caused by multiple kinetic effects, and that grouping all these effects into a single term could cause chemists to view the effect too simplistically.

Otto Theodor Benfey

Otto Theodor Benfey (born 31 October 1925) is a chemist and historian of science. Sent to England to escape Nazi Germany at age 10, he completed his education as a chemist at University College London before moving to the United States. A Quaker and a pacifist, Benfey taught at Haverford College, Earlham College, and Guilford College, retiring in 1988 as the Dana Professor of Chemistry and History of Science, Emeritus.

Benfey is known for his work on chemical education and the history of science. He edited the ACS-sponsored high school magazine Chemistry for fifteen years. His translations include The Japanese and Western Science by Masao Watanabe, The History of the International Chemical Industry by Fred Aftalion, and My 132 Semesters of Chemistry Studies by Vladimir Prelog. His books include From vital force to structural formulas (1964), Introduction to Organic Reaction Mechanisms (1970), and Robert Burns Woodward. Architect and Artist in the World of Molecules (2001).


Phenacetin (or acetophenetidin) is a pain-relieving and fever-reducing drug, which was widely used between its introduction in 1887 and the 1983 ban imposed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.


Piperidine is an organic compound with the molecular formula (CH2)5NH. This heterocyclic amine consists of a six-membered ring containing five methylene bridges (–CH2–) and one amine bridge (–NH–). It is a colorless liquid with an odor described as objectionable, and typical of amines. The name comes from the genus name Piper, which is the Latin word for pepper. Although piperidine is a common organic compound, it is best known as a representative structure element within many pharmaceuticals and alkaloids.

Ruth Pirret

Ruth Pirret, born on 24 July 1874 to Violet Brown and Reverend David Pirret in Milton, Glasgow, graduated from the University of Glasgow in 1898 with a BSc in Pure Science. She is noted as being one of the first female graduates of the University. She went on to research the chemistry of radioactive elements with Frederick Soddy in 1909, developing the disintegration theory of radioactivity and publishing 'The ratio between uranium and radium in minerals'. During World War One she researched corrosion of boilers in marine engines for the British Admiralty.

Tetrazolium chloride

Triphenyl tetrazolium chloride, TTC, or simply tetrazolium chloride (with the formula 2,3,5-triphenyl-2H-tetrazolium chloride) is a redox indicator commonly used in biochemical experiments especially to indicate cellular respiration. It is a white crystalline powder, soluble in water, ethanol and acetone but insoluble in ether.

Ute Deichmann

Ute Deichmann is an historian of modern life sciences. She is adjunct full professor at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel, where she was the founding director of the Jacques Loeb Centre for the History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences in 2007 and continues to be the director. She has also been an associate professor at the University of Cologne, Germany since 2011.

Zaitsev's rule

Zaitsev's rule (or Saytzeff's rule, Saytzev's rule) is an empirical rule for predicting the favored alkene product(s) in elimination reactions. While at the University of Kazan, Russian chemist Alexander Zaitsev studied a variety of different elimination reactions and observed a general trend in the resulting alkenes. Based on this trend, Zaitsev stated, "The alkene formed in greatest amount is the one that corresponds to removal of the hydrogen from the β-carbon having the fewest hydrogen substituents." For example, when 2-iodobutane is treated with alcoholic potassium hydroxide (KOH), 2-butene is the major product and 1-butene is the minor product.

More generally, Zaitsev's rule predicts that in an elimination reaction, the most substituted product will be the most stable, and therefore the most favored. The rule makes no generalizations about the stereochemistry of the newly formed alkene, but only the regiochemistry of the elimination reaction. While effective at predicting the favored product for many elimination reactions, Zaitsev's rule is subject to many exceptions.

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