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Q. Did Mendeleev make the first periodic table?

A. No. Alexandre Beguyer de Chancourtois' "telluric screw" was the first, as he proposed a classification of the then-known (1858) elements based on atomic weights, and plotted them on the surface of a cylinder, in a spiral.
        Details of answer;
      In 1862, a year before John Alexander Reina Newlands published his classification of the elements, de Chancourtois created a fully-functioning and unique system of organizing the chemical elements. His proposed classification of elements was based on the newest values of atomic weights obtained by Stanislao Cannizzaro in 1858.
      De Chancourtois devised a spiral graph that was arranged on a cylinder, which he called vis tellurique, or telluric helix because tellurium was the element in the middle of the graph. De Chancourtois ordered the elements by increasing atomic weight and with similar elements lined up vertically.
      De Chancourtois plotted the atomic weights on the surface of the cylinder with a circumference of 16 units, the approximate atomic weight of oxygen, the first Periodic Table. The resulting helical curve brought similar elements onto corresponding points above or below one another (as on the modern periodic tables) on the cylinder. He was the first scientist to see the periodicity of elements when they were arranged in order of their atomic weights. He saw that the similar elements occurred at regular atomic weight intervals. Publication of his work, difficult to understand without even the diagram of the helix included, attracted little attention from chemists around the world. It was not until 1869 that Dmitri Mendeleev’s periodic table attracted attention and gained widespread scientific acceptance.
      Before this, however, the quest for a systematic arrangement of the elements started with the discovery of individual elements. By 1860 about 60 elements were known and a method was needed for organization. The development of periodic relationships was advanced by German chemist Johann Dobereiner who grouped elements based on similarities; that calcium strontium and barium possess similar chemical properties, that the atomic weight of strontium fell midway between the weights of calcium and barium, and that there was the same pattern for the alkali metal triad (Li/Na/K) and the halogen triad (Cl/Br/I).
      In 1829 Dobereiner proposed the Law of Triads, in which the middle element in a vertical triad had an atomic weight that was the average of the other two members. Soon other scientists found chemical relationships which extended beyond triads. Fluorine was added to Cl/Br/I group; sulfur, oxygen, selenium and tellurium were grouped into a family; nitrogen, phosphorus, arsenic, antimony, and bismuth were classified as another group.       Following de Chancourtois’ “telluric screw”, English chemist John Newlands, having arranged the 62 known elements in order of increasing atomic weights, noted that after an interval of eight elements, similar physical/chemical properties reappeared. In 1863 he wrote a paper proposing the Law of Octaves proclaiming this. Because the use of a musical analogy in a chemical theory sounded like a regression to Pythagorean mysticism, the theory was ridiculed. It was not until Mendeléev published his periodic table that Newlands’ law was shown to have a great deal of truth to it.


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Detailed answer to “Did Mendeleev make the first periodic table?”
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Democritus,  Periodic Table Basis,  Patenting,   Element Groups,  Mendeleev,  Element Symbols,  Spiral Models, de Chancourtois,  hydrogen,  Noble Gases,  neon,  Niels Bohr,  Theodore Gray,  Rare Earths, krypton,  Glenn Seaborg,  xenon,  Alexander Arrangement of Elements,  Eric Scerri,  Fernando Dufour,  Other Inventors

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