(1807 – 1853)
French chemist who, as a student of Dumas was given the responsibility of determining the problems with the candles in the French King's 1833 soireé. He braved Berzelius's criticism and demonstrated that hydrogen was being replaced by oppositely changed chlorine atoms, evolving hydrogen chloride gas. This contradicted Berzelius's radical theory, which forbid the replacement of an electronegative element with a more electropositive one, and brought him ridicule from the established chemical community. Laurent used ideas from crystallography to represent organic compounds by three-dimensional structures. However, he believed these structures to be merely symbolic. He collaborated in experiments with Gerhardt, and further developed the type theory proposed by Dumas.French organic chemist. He devised a systematic nomenclature for organic chemistry. His studies on naphthalene and its chlorination products led him to propose a nucleus theory that foreshadowed modern structural chemistry; he proposed that the structural grouping of atoms within molecules determined how the molecules combined in organic reactions. This theory conflicted with the then current notion that the product of organic reactions depended solely on the electrical charge of the atoms involved. His theory greatly influenced the theory of types proposed by J. B. Dumas and C. F. Gerhardt.
Biographical references: ABF: I 611, 303-310; II 393, 352-353. Nouvelle Biographie Générale (Hoefer). Poggendorff: 1, cols. 1386-7. Schaedler, Biographisch Handwörterbuch, 1891: 65. WBI.
1. French, 1847.
Précis | le | Cristallographie | suivi | D'Une Méthode Simple | D'Analyse Au Chalumeau | D'Après Des Leçons Particulières | De M. Laurent | Professeur De Chimie A La Faculté Des Sciences De Bordeaux | Avec 175 figures dans le texte | [ornate rule] | Paris | Victor Masson | Libraire Des Sociétés Savantes Près Le Ministère De L'Instruction Publique | 1, Place De L'École-De-Médecine | Alême maison, chez C. Michelsen, à Leipzig | [rule] | 1847.
8°: π2 1-86 94; 54l.; , -104 p., illus. Page size: 180 x 114 mm.
Contents: [2 pgs], Half title page, "Précis | De | Cristallographie," verso "De L'Imprimerie De Crapelet | Rue De Vaugirard, 9."; [2 pgs], Title page, verso blank.; , "Avant-Propos.; , Blank.; -102, Text.; -104, "Table Des Matières."
Rare. Laurent, renowned in science history for discoveries in organic chemistry, publishes here in his first book procedures on the use of crystallography and the blow-pipe in mineral analysis.
Bibliographical references: BL [1255.b.14.]. BL [1170.c.14.(2.)]. DSB: 8, 54-61. Partington, History of Chemistry, 1961-70: 4, 376-93 [see page 391]. Roller & Goodman, Catalogue, 1976: 2, 82..