History of chemistry


The history of chemistry is rich, evolving from early discussions on the nature of matter in ancient Egypt and Greece, through to the emergence of alchemy, the development of the periodic table and quantum chemistry.

Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • Comments and Opinion |

    We all appreciate how chemical knowledge has advanced over the years, but Bruce C. Gibb reminds us that chemical culture has similarly made great advances.

    • Bruce C. Gibb
    Nature Chemistry 9, 1035–1036
  • Comments and Opinion |

    Dieter Ackermann explains why element 110 occupies a significant place in the superheavy corner of the periodic table.

    • Dieter Ackermann
  • Comments and Opinion |

    The question often arises as to who may have deserved a Nobel Prize but was not awarded one. Rarely is this discussion extended to who should have received more than one Nobel Prize, but in the field of organic synthesis there are some compelling candidates.

    • Jeffrey I. Seeman
    Nature Chemistry 9, 925–929
  • Comments and Opinion |

    Adrian Dingle tells the story of how the name of element 109 represents the lasting recognition that one of the greatest nuclear physicists was in danger of never receiving.

    • Adrian Dingle
  • Comments and Opinion |

    Brett F. Thornton and Shawn C. Burdette relate how element 100 was first identified in a nuclear weapons test, but that was classified information, so researchers had to 'discover' it again using other methods.

    • Brett F. Thornton
    •  & Shawn C. Burdette
  • Comments and Opinion |

    Louis Pasteur was a scientific giant of the nineteenth century, but, as Joseph Gal asks, was his most famous contribution to the understanding of chemistry — chirality — influenced more by his artistic talents?

    • Joseph Gal
    Nature Chemistry 9, 604–605