CHEM 125a - Lecture 24 - Determining Chemical Structure by Isomer Counting (1869)

Lecture 24 - Determining Chemical Structure by Isomer Counting (1869)


Half a century before direct experimental observation became possible, most structures of organic molecules were assigned by inspired guessing based on plausibility. But Wilhelm Körner developed a strictly logical system for proving the structure of benzene and its derivatives based on isomer counting and chemical transformation. His proof that the six hydrogen positions in benzene are equivalent is the outstanding example of this chemical logic but was widely ignored because, in Palermo, he was far from the seats of chemical authority.


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