Portrait of English chemist, Sir William H. Perkin

Portrait of English chemist, Sir William H. Perkin

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: William Henry Perkin. Portrait of English chemist Sir William Henry Perkin (1838-1907), founder of the organic chemical industry. The photo was taken by himself aged 14, in 1852. In 1856 while still a student at the Royal College of Chemistry, Perkin accidentally produced mauveine, the first synthetic dyestuff. Aided by his father, he set up a factory to manufacture this new dye and, later, other dyes based on coal tar products. He continued to solve some important problems of organic acids and he synthesized the amino acid glycine. At age 36, Perkin gave up dyemaking to concentrate on research. He developed a general synthesis of aromatic acids (the Perkin reaction).

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Keywords: chemist, discoverer of, first, mauve, perkin, portraits, sir william henry, surname p, synthetic dye, w.h.

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