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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 85

Inorganic Chemistry

Inorganic Chemistry.

Familiar indications of the properties and uses of select non-metallic and metallic Elements, and of their most notable Compounds.

As it is undesirable to have occasion to use unex- page 45 plained chemical phraseology, so likewise is there an awkwardness in naming chemicals not yet come to, as is too often the case when the Teacher, in introducing the early bodies, wishes to give an account of their preparation. A striking example is given by Oxygen, generally the first of all, of which the preparation involves the use of Potassium Chlorate or Manganese Dioxide. It is not a bad plan to group together a certain number of easy examples of preparation at the end of the elementary Inorganic Chemistry, but the explanation of the more complex processes should be reserved for the second Period, in order to have the benefit of the acquaintance with symbolic equations.

It is rather natural that in arranging an abstract of elementary Chemical Science for the first division of a Course of Bionomy, the classification should be devised in accordance with the utilitarian purpose in view, instead of being based on abstract theory. Thus for instance, the non-metallic bodies may be conveniently impressed on the memory of beginners by taking first the gaseous ones, Oxygen, Hydrogen, Nitrogen and Chlorine, and then the most important of the solid ones, Carbon, Phosphorus, Sulphur, and Iodine; Fluorine, Boron and Silicon being represented by their compounds, and Bromine and Selenium being left for the second Period. As for the Metals a popular selection of examples seems to admit of being classed very conveniently according to lines of usefulness. Such at least is the conclusion at which I arrived in organizing an Industrial Course of Chemistry, not published, but of which the Inorganic portion in 8 Lectures, was delivered at two London Institutions. That classification, rather popular than scientific, is given as follows, for the sake of any suggestive use of which it may be susceptible.