Search the Collection

Jons Jakob Berzelius (1779-1848), Swedish chemist

Sitter in 1 portrait
Berzelius was a dominant figures in chemistry during the first half of the 19th century. He devised the symbolic language of chemistry, designating each element by the first letter(s) of its Latin name. In preparing a chemistry textbook for his medical students (Lärboki Kemien, vol. 1, 1808), Berzelius began the series of experiments establishing that the elements in inorganic substances are bound together in definite proportions by weight (the law of constant proportions). He was responsible for the classification of minerals by their chemical composition rather than by their crystalline type. He continued to write textbooks and in 1822 he began a series of annual reports on the status of chemistry.

List Thumbnail