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August Wilhelm von Hofmann (1818-1892), German chemist. Hofmann was born at Giessen in the Grand Duchy of Hesse. He studies theology and law at Gottingen before turning to science and studying under Liebig. In 1841, Hofmann obtained his PhD, by studying the properties of coal tar and aniline. After moving to England he started to develop new dyes, called Hofmann violets. He was director of the Royal College of Chemistry from 1845-1864. He returned to Germany in 1864, and continued his work, founding the German Chemical Society (1868) and helping establish Germany's dominance in the manufacture of synthetic dye. Hofmann discovered many organic chemicals in his time, including allyl alcohol and formaldehyde. He was also the first to introduce molecular models into lectures.
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