What exactly is an element? Where did these fragments of matter come from? How did the ancient alchemists give rise to modern day chemistry? How did the Periodic Table of elements come about? Why is it called ‘The Periodic Table’? This essay addresses these questions in a jargon free, light-hearted fashion. Here, I discuss a number of interesting elements and how they have influenced mankind both culturally and superstition-wise. The essay, which also contains a number of ‘interesting’ element-related stories, serves as an introduction to the chemistry of the elements. As such it contains references to other work on the subject. The Periodic Table is also explained.
Alan Hall PhD
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