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Engraving of August Kekule

Engraving of August Kekule

H411/0016

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Credit

SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Engraving of Friderich August Kekule von Stradonitz, known as August Kekule (1829-1896), German chemist and discoverer of structural formulae. Kekule originally intended to be an architect, but soon decided to study chemistry. In 1856 he set up his own laboratory for his studies. He became interested in the concept of valence, and in 1858 published his theories. He proposed the diagramatical representation of molecular structure, with individual atoms joined by lines representing single or multiple bonds. He later derived the ring structure of benzene by this method, a major advance in organic chemistry. Such diagrams are now known as Kekule structures.

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