Prout's hypothesis

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The hypothesis put forward by the British chemist William Prout (1785–1850) in 1815 that all atomic weights are integer multiples of the atomic weight of hydrogen and hence that all atoms are made out of hydrogen. Subsequent work on atomic weights in the 19th century showed that this hypothesis is incorrect (with chlorine having an atomic weight of 35.5 being a glaring example of this). The understanding of atomic structure that emerged in the 20th century, with atomic number being the number of protons in an atom and non-integer atomic weights being due to mixtures of isotopes, has vindicated the spirit of Prout's hypothesis.

http://web.lemoyne.edu/~giunta/prout.html William Prout's original paper

Subjects: Chemistry.

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