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Priestley's oxygen apparatus, 1774.

Priestley's oxygen apparatus, 1774.
4 0 c m
actual image size: 23cm x 32cm


Reproduction. Joseph Priestley (1733-1804) used this apparatus to prepare oxygen by heating mercuric oxide floating on the surface of some mercury in an inverted phial in 1774. He established its properties in a long series of experiments with mice and plants. The single lens in the picture was Priestley's own. The bowl and the phial are modern reconstructions.

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© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library

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