Online Encyclopedia

SMITHSON TENNANT (1761-1815)

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Originally appearing in Volume V26, Page 618 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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SMITHSON TENNANT (1761-1815), English chemist, was born at Selby, Yorkshire, on the 3oth of November 1761. He began to study medicine at Edinburgh in 1781, but lima few months moved to Cambridge, where he devoted himself to botany and chemistry. He graduated M.D. at Cambridge in 179o, and about the same time purchased an estate near Cheddar, where he carried out agricultural experiments. He was appointed professor of chemistry at Cambridge in 1813, but lived TENNENT to deliver only one course of lectures, being killed near Boulogne on the 22nd of February 1815 by the fall of a bridge over which he was riding. He was a man of more promise than performance, and his chief achievement was the discovery of the elements iridium and osmium, which he found in the residues from the solution of platinum ores (1804). He also contributed to the proof of the identity of diamond and charcoal.
End of Article: SMITHSON TENNANT (1761-1815)
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