Who is the Father of Chemistry?

Who is the Father of Chemistry?

If asked to recognize the father of chemistry, your most reliable answer would presumably be Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier, author of the book “Elements of Chemistry,” written in 1787. He compiled the first comprehensive—at that time—list of elements, identified and named oxygen and hydrogen, aided in developing the metric system, helped improve and normalize chemical nomenclature, and found that matter retains its mass even when it changes forms.

Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier, (August 26, 1743, to May 8, 1794)

Father of Chemostry: Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier
Father of Chemostry: Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier

He was a prominent French chemist and an influencing personality in the 18th-century chemical revolution who developed an experimentally based theory of the chemical reactivity of oxygen and coauthored the modern system for naming chemical substances. 

Early Education

As a youth, he exhibited an unusual studiousness and concern for the public good. After studying the humanities and sciences at the Collège Mazarin, Antoine Lavoisier pursued law. Nevertheless, he dedicated much of his time to lectures on physics and chemistry and to working with leading experts.  


  1. Antoine Lavoisier concluded that oxygen was a chief substance in combustion, and he gave the element its name.
  2. Lavoisier also contributed to initial ideas on composition and chemical modifications by asserting the radical theory, believing that radicals, which function as a single group in a chemical process, combine with oxygen in reactions.
  3.  He developed the modern system of naming chemical substances and has been called the “father of modern chemistry” for his emphasis on careful experimentation.
  4. Who is the father of mathematics?

 Father of Chemistry: Different Branches

Those known as the father of a scientific field in chemistry are regarded as the founder of that scientific field. In some fields, various people are acknowledged as the founders; meanwhile, in others, the title of being the “father” is debatable.

Atomic theory (early)DemocritusFounder of atomism in cosmology
Atomic theory (modern)Father Roger BoscovichFirst coherent description of atomic theory, well over a century before modern atomic theory emerged First scientific description of the atom as a building block for more complex structures
Chemical thermodynamics (modern)Gilbert Lewis, Willard Gibbs, Merle Randall, and Edward Guggenheim (founders)Books: Thermodynamics and the Free Energy of Chemical Substances (1923) and Modern Thermodynamics by the Methods of Willard Gibbs (1933); because of the major contributions of these two books in unifying the applications of thermodynamics to chemistry
Chemistry (early)Jabir ibn Hayyan (Geber)Introduced the experimental method in alchemy (d. 815)
Chemistry (modern)Antoine Lavoisier Robert Boyle Jöns Berzelius John Dalton (founders)Book: Elements of Chemistry (1787) Book: The Sceptical Chymist (1661) Development of chemical nomenclature (1800s) Revival of atomic theory (1803)
Nuclear chemistryOtto HahnBook: Applied Radiochemistry (1936) First person to split an atomic nucleus (1938) Nobel Prize in Chemistry for discovery of nuclear fission (1944)
Periodic tableDmitri MendeleevArranged sixty-six elements (known at the time) in order of atomic weight by periodic intervals (1869)
Physical chemistrySvante Arrhenius Wilhelm Ostwald Hermann von Helmholtz Willard Gibbs (founders)Devised much of the theoretical foundation for physical chemistry through their publications off, On the Equilibrium of Heterogeneous Substances(1876), and Thermodynamik chemischer Vorgange(1882)

Another traditional choice for the title of father of chemistry is Jabir ibn Hayyan, a Persian alchemist who lived around 800 who applied scientific principles to his studies. Other people seldom perceived as the father of modern chemistry are Robert Boyle, Jöns Berzelius, and John Dalton.

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