Richard Kirwan's Phlogiston Theory: Its Success and Fate

  title={Richard Kirwan's Phlogiston Theory: Its Success and Fate},
  author={Seymour Mauskop},
  pages={185 - 205}
Abstract First proposed in the early 1780s, Richard Kirwan's phlogiston theory was the most successful enunciation of the English pneumatic approach to phlogiston. Phlogiston was identified with a material substance, inflammable air. In this paper, I explore the nature of Kirwan's theory, its success in the mid-1780s, the unprecedented collective attack on Kirwan's Essay on Phlogiston by Lavoisier and his colleagues, and Kinvan's ultimate abandonment of phlogistic explanation. 

The Reality of Phlogiston in Great Britain

Mi Gyung Kim (2008) has challenged the historiographical assump- tion that phlogiston was the paradigmatic concept in eighteenth century chemistry. Her analysis of the operational, theoretical, and

The ‘absolute existence’ of phlogiston: the losing party's point of view

It is demonstrated that what was defended under the title ‘phlogiston’ was no longer a particular hypothesis about combustion and respiration but a set of ontological and epistemological assumptions and the empirical practices associated with them.

Richard Kirwan (1733-1812)

Kirwan's life can be seen as a succession of phases whose boundaries were flexible. Born to a Catholic, land-owning family in Ireland, his youth and education were very much a product of those

Scientific pluralism and the Chemical Revolution.

  • M. Kusch
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    Studies in history and philosophy of science
  • 2015

Louis-Bernard Guyton de Morveau e a revolução química das Luzes

The aim of this paper is to investigate the encyclopedic conception of scientific revolution implemented by the French chemist L-B. Guyton de Morveau (1737-1816). Shifting the analysis of chemical

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  • F. Jacoby
  • Philosophy
    Perspectives on Science
  • 2021
This paper uses scientific perspectivism as a lens for understanding acid experiments from the Chemical Revolution. I argue that this account has several advantages over several recent

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  • Hasok Chang
  • Philosophy
    Studies in history and philosophy of science
  • 2015

Dr. Thomas Beddoes (1760–1808): Chemistry, Medicine, and Books in the French and Chemical Revolutions

Dr. Thomas Beddoes was a mere bit-player in Britain’s cultural history, as Roy Porter has told us;1 but his career, seen through correspondence, notes, publications, and instruments, invites us to

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It was through the Chemical Revolution of the late eighteenth century that water first came to be recognized as a compound, having been considered an element since ancient times. In this chapter I

Mid-Eighteenth-century Chemistry in France as Seen Through Student Notes from the Courses of Gabriel-François Venel and Guillaume-François Rouelle

Abstract Students' manuscript notes from Rouelle's and Venel's chemistry courses offer a picture of chemistry in France in the mid-eighteenth century that is quite different from the one given by the



II. Objections to the experiments and observations relating to the principle of acidity, the composition of water, and phlogiston, considered; with farther experiments and observations on the same subject

  • J. Priestley
  • Education
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London
  • 1789
Having never failed, when the experiments were conducted with due attention, to procure some acid whenever I decomposed dephlogisticated and inflammable air in close vessels, I concluded that an acid

Memoire sur la Combustion du Gaz hydrogoene dans des vaisseaux clos

  • Annales de chimie

From same quotation in Grison et aI., A Scientific Correspondence

    In the gun barrel experiment. Kirwan, ibid