last papers in which you will find some new facts: I think I have been able to prove that the oxymuriatic gas has not been yet been decompounded. — It seems to be a solvent principle analogous to oxygene. The muriatic acid is composed of equal volumes of this gas and hydrogene.
I have discovered a gaseous compound (the existence of which has been long suspected) of oxymuriatic gas and oxygene, two in volume of the first to one of the last25. The metals will not burn in it till it is decomposed. It fulminates without the presence of combustible matter at a very low heat and is resolved into oxygene and oxymuriatic gas. It is rapidly absorbed by water but may be preserved over mercury.
It is not a little curious that the first views of the Atomic Chemistry, which has been so much expanded by Dalton and generally in my opinion after ideas more ingenious than correct, are to be found in a work published in 1789 by William Higgins, « A comparative view of the two theories of chemistry »26.
I shall send you by Dr Hagen, who has been so good as to promise to take charge of this letter, a paper which I have just printed: the Bakerian lecture for 181027. I hope soon to send you a paper read in February before the Royal Society on the new fulminating gas.
Any paper addressed to me « Royal Society » or Royal Institution will reach me.
I feel very much flattered by the honour done to me by the Academy of Stockholm.
I shall have the honour of proposing you as a foreign member of the Royal Society this next week.
I shall always feel honoured by receiving your communications.
|I am with much respect|
your obliged and obediant