Julius Lothar Meyer
|Julius Lothar von Meyer|
Julius Lothar von Meyer
|Born||August 19, 1830
|Died||April 11, 1895 (aged 65)
|Institutions||University of Tübingen|
|Known for||Periodic table of chemical elements|
|Notable awards||Davy Medal (1882)|
Julius Lothar von Meyer (August 19, 1830 – April 11, 1895) was a German chemist. He was one of the pioneers in developing the first periodic table of chemical elements. Both, Mendeleev and Meyer worked with Robert Bunsen.
Julius Lothar von Meyer was born in Varel,Germany (then part of the Duchy of Oldenburg). He was the son of Friedrich August Meyer, a physician, and Anna Biermann. After attending Altes Gymnasium Oldenburg AGO high school, he studied medicine at the Zürich University in 1851. Two years later, he studied at the University of Würzburg, where he studied Pathology, as a student of Rudolf Virchow. He studied under C. F. W. Ludwig in Zurich, which prompted him to devote his attention to physiological chemistry, and after graduating from Würzburg in 1854, he went to Heidelberg, where R. Bunsen held the chair of chemistry. In 1858, he graduated with a Ph.D. with a thesis on the action of carbon monoxide on the blood. With this interest in the physiology of respiration, he had recognized that oxygen combines with the hemoglobin in blood.
Influenced by the mathematical teaching of G. R. Kirchhoff, he took up the study of mathematical physics at Königsberg under F. E. Neumann, and in 1859, he became privat-docent in physics and chemistry at Breslau. In 1866, Meyer accepted a post at the Eberswalde Forestry Academy at Neustadt-Eberswalde but soon moved to Carlsruhe Polytechnic.
Meyer's contributions also included the concept that carbon atoms in benzene were arranged in a ring, although he did not propose the alternation of single and double bonds which later were included in the structure by August Kekulé.
During the Franco-German campaign, the Polytechnic was used as a hospital, and Meyer took an active role in the care of the wounded. In 1876, Meyer became the first Professor of Chemistry at the University of Tübingen, where he served until his death.
Meyer is best known for his part in the periodic classification of the elements. He noted, as J. A. R. Newlands did in England, if each element is arranged in the order of their atomic weights, they fall into groups of similar chemical and physical properties repeated at periodic intervals. According to him, if the atomic weights were plotted as ordinates and the atomic volumes as abscissae—the curve obtained a series of maxima and minima—the most electro-positive elements appearing at the peaks of the curve in the order of their atomic weights.
His book, Die modernen Theorien der Chemie, published in Breslau in 1862 (The Internet Database of Periodic Tables. Hemogenesis web book) and 1864, contained an early version of the periodic table containing 28 elements, classified elements into six families by their valence—for the first time, elements had been grouped according to their valence. Works on organizing the elements by atomic weight, until then had been stymied by inaccurate measurements of the atomic weights.
He published articles about classification table of the elements in horizontal form (1862, 1864) and vertical form (1870), in which the series of periods are properly ended by an element of the earth metal group.
Mendeleev published periodic table of all known elements (predicted several new elements to complete the table and corrected atomic weights) in 1869. A few months later, Meyer published a revised and expanded version of his 1864 table independently, which was virtually identical to that published by Mendeleev (Meyer had been sent a copy of Mendeleev's table earlier; Mendeleev had sent it to all well-known chemists of those times) and a paper showing graphically the periodicity of the elements as a function of atomic weight. Meyer, as well as other chemists, was doubtful about Mendeleev's periodic law, and he criticized Mendeleev for "changing existing elements' atomic weights, only regarding possibility of periodical law in its structure". However, Mendeleev's work received significant support, when the new elements were found as predicted and atomic weights accordingly.
Meyer's table with a horizontal display of periods in 1864
|Valence IV||Valence III||Valence II||Valence I||Valence I||Valence II||The mass difference|
Meyer's table with vertical display of periods in 1870
Meyer married Johanna Volkmann on August 16, 1866.
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
- (Makeyev A.K. Julius Lothar Meyer was first to build the periodic table of elements. // Eropean applied sciences, April, 2013, 4 (2) - pp. 49–61).
- Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Meyer, Julius Lothar". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
- Seubert, Karl (1918). "Nekrolog: Lothar Meyer". Berichte der deutschen chemischen Gesellschaft 28 (4): 1109–1146. doi:10.1002/cber.18950280498.
- Makeyev A.K. Julius Lothar Meyer was first which built the periodic table of elements // European applied sciences, № 4 2013, (April) volume 2. - pp. 49-61. ISSN 2195-2183
- Periodic table according to Lothar Meyer (1870)
- Video of a talk by Michael Gordin titled "Periodicity, Priority, Pedagogy: Mendeleev and Lothar Meyer"
- The Internet Database of Periodic Tables. Chemogenesis web book.
- "Meyer, Lothar Julius". Encyclopedia Americana. 1920.
- Eric Scerri's website on the periodic table