William Prout

William Prout (* 15. January 1785 in Horton (Gloucestershire), † 9. April 1850 in London) was an English chemist and physician; it made an important contribution to the atomic theory.

He spent his life as a practicing physician in London, concerned themselves however much with chemical research. He worked on biochemical topics and accomplished many analyses of secretions of living organisms. He believed that the secretions would result from the decay of body fabric. he discovered 1823 that the gastric juice contains hydrochloric acid, which can be isolated by distillation. it suggested 1827, the substances in food into coal hydrates dividing fats and proteins.

It remained however rather because of its research in physical chemistry in memory. In the year 1815 it - on the basis of that at that time it admitted atomic weight - set up the hypothesis that the atomic weight of each element was an integral multiple of the atomic weight of the hydrogen. The hydrogen atom is thus the only fundamental particle and the atoms of the other elements is compound from different groupings of hydrogen atoms.

Prouts acceptance were not confirmed by later precise measurements of the atomic weights, them were however a so fundamental view of the structure of the atom that Ernest Rutherford gave 1920 its name to the again discovered proton, in order to honour thereby William Prout.

Prout contributed also to the improvement of the barometer . The Royal Society in London took over its building method as standard.


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