Page:Biographies of Scientific Men.djvu/127

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LIEBIG

1803-1873

GERMANY'S great chemist was born at Darmstadt on 12th May 1803, the year that the Electorate of Hanover was seized and occupied by the army of Napoleon, and the violation of German territory by the seizure of the Due d'Enghein at Ettenheim, and his subsequent execution.

Leibig's natural aptitude for experiments suggested the idea that he would be suitable for an apothecary; consequently, his father selected this as the profession for his son. He did not, however, long continue this work, and was sent to the University of Bonn, and entered as a student of medicine. He left Bonn, and graduated at Erlangen University at the age of eighteen. In Liebig's student days the German professors, unlike teachers in this country, enjoyed a perfect "Lehrfreiheit" (freedom in teaching), by which is meant the liberty of choosing the subjects which they treat in their lectures, and of expressing their views upon them freely. German professors used to read their lectures (some few delivered

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