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Conclusion From Saline Acids To Acidifying Oxygen

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Chapter Summary

The concluding chapter of the book The Salt of the Earth summarizes that Priestley referring to a long intellectual tradition in seventeenth and eighteenth-century chymistry, which attempted to identify the vital principles in the air responsible for respiration with a particular reactive chymical substance. The purpose is to ascertain briefly to what extent these concepts of a vital salt or saline acidic spirit survived in the Enlightenment. The authors have analyzed the role of saline spirits or acids in the chemical revolution of Lavoisier. The chapter examines Stephen Hales' works namely Vegetable Staticks, and Philosophical Experiments. The authors have also demonstrated to what extent Lavoisier was influenced by Hales and the Newtonian chymical tradition of acidic saline spirits in the atmosphere.

Keywords: acidifying oxygen; acids; Lavoisier; Newtonian chymistry; Philosophical Experiments; saline acids; Stephen Hales; Vegetable Staticks; vital salt



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