The New International Encyclopædia/Wurtz, Charles Adolphe
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Wurtz, Charles Adolphe
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WURTZ, vụrts, Charles Adolphe (1817-84). A French chemist, distinguished for his work in the atomic theory and for his discoveries in the organic branch of the science. He was born at Strassburg, and was educated there and at Giessen. In 1845 he went to Paris as tutor in the department of organic chemistry at the Sorbonne. Afterwards he became professor at the Agronomic Institute of Versailles (1851), professor of organic chemistry at the Sorbonne, and professor of toxicology at the school of medicine (1853). He was dean of the Sorbonne medical faculty from 1866 to 1876. Among Wurtz's principal discoveries were those of the ammoniac compounds (1849), of glycol (1856), of aldol (C8H8O4), and the so-called process of ‘aldolization.’ His most important work, however, was in the theoretic side of chemistry in distinguishing the atomic relations of organic compounds. His publications include: Mémoire sur las ammoniaques composées (1850); Traité élémentaire de chimie médicale (1864-65); Dictionnaire de chimie pure et appliquée (1868-78; supplement, 1880-86; 2d supplement by Fridel, 1892); Progrès de l'industrie des matières colorantes artificielles (1876); Théorie atomique (1878); and Traité de chimie biologique (1884).