Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

Scientist, b. at Valognes, La Manche, 26 Feb., 1807; d. in Paris, 31 May or 1 June, 1867. He began his career as a pharmacist, studying at La Fère. In 1827 he went to Paris and became an assistant to Gay Lussac and Lessaigne. At this period he also occupied a position in the hospital of La Salpêtrière, but resigned to get back to his researches. In 1830 he was a professor in the University of Lille ; in 1833 assayer to the Mint, and on the staff of the Polytechnic School in Paris ; and later was engaged in the Collège de France, holding the title of professor there until 1851. In 1836 he visited Germany and was associated in his work in organic chemistry with Liebig. In 1837 he succeeded Deyeux as a member of the Academy of Sciences of France. In 1848 he was made president of the Mint Commission, and in 1849 became a member of the Municipal Commission at Paris. He resigned his public positions in 1852.

His work with Liebig included investigations on oenanthic ether, tannic acid, stearin, sugar, etc., and with Frémy, Cahours, and Gélis, on a series on vegetable acids, including mallic and gallic acids, and on petroleum and butyric fermentation. He was the first to synthesize a fatty substance from glycerine and an acid; to isolate tannic acid; to identify beet-root and cane-sugar as being the same; and to make gun-cotton or nitrocellulose in France. Other work by him was devoted to analytical chemistry and the determination of the atomic weights of several of the elements. Discovering a new class of salts (nitro-sulphates) he based thereon a new analytical method for the determination of copper. In 1850 as consulting chemist of the St. Gobain glass works he introduced sodium sulphate as a constituent in glass-making, producing artificial aventurine with chromium as a basis, studying the effect of sunlight on coloured glass, and working on enamels. Many of his papers have been published in the "Annales de Chimie et de Physique" and in the "Comptes Rendus". He published several works: "Traité de Chimie Générale, analytique, Industrielle et agricole" (3 vols., Paris, 1847), in collaboration with Frémy; "Abrégé de Chimie" (Paris, 1848); "Notions générales de Chimie" (Paris, 1853). According to his friend, the Abbé Moigno, he died an edifying Christian death.


More Encyclopedia

The Catholic Encyclopedia is the most comprehensive resource on Catholic teaching, history, and information ever gathered in all of human history. This easy-to-search online version was originally printed in fifteen hardcopy volumes.

Catholic Encyclopedia

Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching, the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church has defined, but also an impartial record of different views of acknowledged authority on all disputed questions, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archaeology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.

No one who is interested in human history, past and present, can ignore the Catholic Church, either as an institution which has been the central figure in the civilized world for nearly two thousand years, decisively affecting its destinies, religious, literary, scientific, social and political, or as an existing power whose influence and activity extend to every part of the globe. In the past century the Church has grown both extensively and intensively among English-speaking peoples. Their living interests demand that they should have the means of informing themselves about this vast institution, which, whether they are Catholics or not, affects their fortunes and their destiny.

Copyright © Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company New York, NY. Volume 1: 1907; Volume 2: 1907; Volume 3: 1908; Volume 4: 1908; Volume 5: 1909; Volume 6: 1909; Volume 7: 1910; Volume 8: 1910; Volume 9: 1910; Volume 10: 1911; Volume 11: - 1911; Volume 12: - 1911; Volume 13: - 1912; Volume 14: 1912; Volume 15: 1912

Catholic Online Catholic Encyclopedia Digital version Compiled and Copyright © Catholic Online


Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Corinthians 15:1-11
1 I want to make quite clear to you, brothers, what ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 118:1-2, 16-17, 28
1 Alleluia! Give thanks to Yahweh for he is good, for ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 7:36-50
36 One of the Pharisees invited him to a meal. When ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 18th, 2014 Image

St. Joseph of Cupertino
September 18: St. Joseph was born at Cupertino, in the diocese of Nardo in the ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter