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26.4 lbonete fra kúak Haraht seem to require; yet it will be well done the time for the reader the several stages of my argu
od Hrebehold, I haat lain bellesary that the admitted facts the idea than it that buita akrild be collected, so as to exhibit Olyatt Hordal Atelike. If a sequence can, in any case, A litt all, I hitta pressing the one into the other, it is de aprehet brenda wat, we can establish with respect to the espostpodignite the beau fi gb end at the Bank, will apply to that of any other of
that, if we can shew, that any one of the metals do the baywe are entitled to assume that all the agladys a phe hotellin "A hlut raink clasa are similarly formed. Besides,
Babbetula Hom fx treating of these simple bodies in a trikot has a transplany manner, than would be necessary in a mewith will main of science, it will be observed, that, if the sun in tablishing my conclusions, the following wor* vsakit te will then become elementary, and fitted to be pratite hit thick, who enter, even for the first time, on the get torty Anical science.
Athum baying soon that all the bodies termed Simple, may het pumud in a tw roots or elements of their own order, we shell #tasarily be conducted to the conclusion, that these ptwas hit sluinents are themselves compound, and derived from
fraints of matter. This is the utmost degree of genetalization to which I shall attempt to conduct the reader, for the purpose of shewing, that such generalization is consistent with the conclusions which had been already drawn, and confirmatory of them; and that the assumption of an order of molecules, superior to those of known bodies, is in accordance with the laws of chemical combination, in so far as they have been determined by experiment.
Page 126, line 4 from bottom, for silicium read silica
132, line 4 from top, for a metal, read the oxide of a metal,
149, line 9 from top, for H'. read H'.
AN INQUIRY, &c.
I. CHEMICAL ELEMENTS.
It is scarcely possible for any one to engage in chemical inquiries, without feeling that there is something like a want of simplicity and harmony in the relations with which we connect together the members of the first great group of natural bodies, to which, in our ignorance of their composition, we apply the term Simple. The greater number of substances with which we are conversant, are derivable one from another, and are therefore termed Compound; but of the numerous class which we term simple, many are similar to one another with respect to their essential characters, and pass the one into the other by scarcely perceptible gradations, nay, pass into those we term compound, so that no line of natural division can be drawn between the two classes. Yet we hold the one class to be derivative or compound, and the other to be derived from no other bodies; but to be, as it were, distinct products of nature, each formed of particles proper to itself. It is not enough that we explain the meaning which we attach to the term simple, as applied to these bodies, by saying that we hold them to be simple, because we are unable, by the means at our command, to resolve them into other bodies more simple. This is the mere expression of a fact; but even were the fact established beyond dispute, which it is not, we should not be entitled to regard the bodies in question as simple, in contradistinction to another class which we regarded as compound. By the terms simple and compound, we indicate two Orders of bodies, the most distinct, with respect to their chemical constitution, which we can conceive to exist in nature. But there is no such distinction in the chemical and physical characters of the bodies themselves, as can warrant us in assuming that they are distinct in their nature. The mere circumstance of our inability to compose or decompose the substances in the laboratory, furnishes at the best merely negative evidence. Superior means of analysis, or a better use of the means we possess, may enable us to prove bodies to be compound which we now hold to be simple. But even were it otherwise, we have other means of investigation than the processes of the laboratory, for conducting us to truths in science. We have induction and analogy, without which even experiment would fail to conduct us to the discovery of natural laws. If the bodies which we term simple, present the same general physical properties, and exert the same chemical actions, as those which we term compound, and pass into the compound bodies in their characters and functions, the merely negative evidence, that we are unable to decompose them by overcoming their chemical affinities, should not invalidate the conclusion, that both classes are to be placed in the same order of natural bodies, and cannot be separated the one from the other, by so wide a chasm as a distinct molecular constitution.