Prof. Van der Waals on the Continuity of the Liquid and Gaseous States

Abstract

SINCE my letter which was published in your last issue was written, I have found that the first edition of Maxwell's “Theory of Heat” contains a diagram, intended to represent the isothermals of carbonic acid substance, with all, or almost all, the faults of the diagram of Prof. Van der Waals; and from this, no doubt, Van der Waals's diagram was taken. Consequently I beg leave to withdraw absolutely the words used in my letter, viz. “The curves seem certainly not taken from Maxwell,” and also a succeeding sentence which gave my reason for this opinion. I am sorry for my error; but I was not aware, or rather had quite forgotten, that Maxwell's first edition contained this faulty diagram.

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BOTTOMLEY, J. Prof. Van der Waals on the Continuity of the Liquid and Gaseous States. Nature 43, 437 (1891) doi:10.1038/043437b0

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