Johannes Nicolaus Brønsted

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Johannes Nicolaus Brønsted
Johannes Brønsted.jpg
Portrait of Johannes Brønsted
Born(1879-02-22)22 February 1879
Died17 December 1947(1947-12-17) (aged 68)
Copenhagen, Denmark
Alma materUniversity of Copenhagen
Known forBrønsted-Lowry acid-base theory
Brønsted catalysis equation
Scientific career
InstitutionsUniversity of Copenhagen

Johannes Nicolaus Brønsted (Danish: [joˈhænˀəs ne̝koˈlɛːus ˈpʁɶnsteð]; 22 February 1879 – 17 December 1947) born in Varde, was a Danish physical chemist.[1][2][3] He earned a degree in chemical engineering in 1899 and his Ph.D. in 1908 from the University of Copenhagen and was immediately thereafter appointed professor of inorganic and physical chemistry at the same university.[4]

In 1906 he published the first of his many papers on electron affinity,[4] and, simultaneously with the English chemist Thomas Martin Lowry, he introduced the protonic theory of acid-base reactions in 1923.[5][6] That same year, Gilbert N. Lewis proposed an electronic theory of acid-base reactions, but both theories remain commonly used.[4]

In World War II, Brønsted's opposition to the Nazis led to his election to the Danish parliament in 1947, but he was too ill to take his seat and died shortly after the election.[4]


  1. ^ "Johannes Nicolaus Brønsted". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved March 28, 2012.
  2. ^ "Johannes Nicolaus Brønsted". Chemistry Explained. Retrieved March 28, 2012.
  3. ^ "Johannes Nicolaus Brønsted". Volny.
  4. ^ a b c d
  5. ^ J. N. Brönsted (1923) "Einige Bemerkungen über den Begriff der Säuren und Basen" (Some observations about the concept of acids and bases), Recueil des Travaux Chimiques des Pays-Bas, 42 (8) : 718-728.
  6. ^ T. M. Lowry (1923) "The uniqueness of hydrogen," Journal of the Society of Chemical Industry, 42 (3) : 43-47.