Lyon Playfair, Scottish chemist

Lyon Playfair, Scottish chemist

C003/8840

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Caption

Lyon Playfair, 1st Baron Playfair of St.Andrews (1818-1898), Scottish scientist. Playfair was born at Chunar in India, and was privately educated until attending the Universities of St.Andrews and Edinburgh. He went to Germany to study chemistry under Liebig, and on his return became manager of a calico works. Soon after he was appointed professor of chemistry at Manchester and subsequently at the new School of Mines. He was a member of the executive committee for the Great Exhibition and in 1855 was made secretary to the Department of Science. From 1868 he entered politics. He is also known for his championing of a cipher invented by Wheatstone, still called the Playfair Cipher.

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