Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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(1,063 words)

1. Scientific classification

As used today, “salt” denotes a chemical compound made up of positively charged cations and negative anions. However, the theory of ionic bonding that defines the salt as a type was described only in 1915 by the German physicist Walther Kossel. Up to the 19th century, salts were identified primarily on the basis of their taste, solubility in water, and resistance to fire; on the basis of their resemblance to ordinary edible salt, they were grouped together as “salt-li…

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Priesner, Claus and Meinel, Christoph, “Salts”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 06 June 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_026929>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20210601

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