Chlorine is a chemical element with the atomic number 17. It’s symbol is Cl. This post will tell you some history behind the discovery of chlorine and then look at who discovered chlorine.
Who Discovered Chlorine?
A common compound of chlorine, sodium chloride (salt), was used in ancient times. There is evidence that rock salt was used as early as 3000 BC. A Persian alchemist named Rhazes synthesized another compound of chlorine, hydrochloric acid, around 900 AD. A mixture of hydrochloric acid and nitric acid was used to dissolve gold in about 1200 AD. Chlorine gas is released during this process but that was not known at the time.
Swedish chemist Carl Wilhelm Scheele was the first person to isolate chlorine gas and study it. Therefore, he is credited with discovering chlorine in 1774. He did not realize that the gas was an element. He did observe some properties of chlorine- how it could kill insects, its green-yellow color and how it could bleach litmus. It wasn’t until 1810 that Sir Humphry Davy determined that Scheele had actually discovered a new element- chlorine.