Search for simple substances

A Nature of Science reader that tells the story of how scientists have searched for some simple substances from which everything else might be made. The story starts with the discovery that fire could help to obtain metals from rocks and ends with Mendeleev’s triumphant discovery of the periodic law and the development of his table of the elements. Other chemists whose work is outlined include Ibn Hayyin, Al-Razi, Robert Boyle, Antoine Lavoisier, Humphry Davy and Cannizaro.

The chapters are:
1. Many different kinds of matter
2. The four elements
3. Islamic science – balance of the elements
4. From tricks to unmixed substances
5. Lots more elements
6. The pattern appears, at last

Show health and safety information

Please be aware that resources have been published on the website in the form that they were originally supplied. This means that procedures reflect general practice and standards applicable at the time resources were produced and cannot be assumed to be acceptable today. Website users are fully responsible for ensuring that any activity, including practical work, which they carry out is in accordance with current regulations related to health and safety and that an appropriate risk assessment has been carried out.

Author(s)Joan Solomon
Published by

Shelf referenceA 507.12 ASS
Direct URL

This is a physical resource. Come and visit the National STEM Learning Centre library to see it.

Find out more about the Centre