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Antoine-Laurent de Lavoisier (1743-1794), french chemist. Laoisier was born into a wealthy family, inheriting a fortune at the age of five. He was educated at the College Mazarin and published his first paper in 1764. Viewed as the father of modern chemistry, Lavoisier's achievements were manifold and he was an exceptional experimenter. He was the first to state a law of the conservation of mass, that although the form of matter may change its mass is invariant. He recognised and named oxygen and hydrogen, and helped disprove the phlogiston theory. He used a calorimeter to show that respiration was a slow combustion of organic material using inhaled oxygen. He proposed that chemicals were simple combinations of elements and described them by their components, a syetms essentially as used today. He was executed during the French Revolution on trumped-up charges laid by Marat.
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