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John Dalton. Coloured portrait of John Dalton (1766-1844), British meteorologist, chemist and physicist. Dalton was the first chemist to propose the atomic theory of matter. He was interested in meteorology and for 57 years he kept daily weather records using instruments he built. He proved that rain is precipitated by a decrease in temperature. He described colour-blindness, a condition from which he suffered. In 1801 he discovered the law of partial pressures of gases, and also discovered the law of the thermal expansion of gases (now known as Charles' Law). In 1803 he stated that all matter consists of indivisible "atoms".
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