Reference numberPP/5/23/1
Previous numbersPP/37/27
TitleManuscript, 'Experiments on the discharge of electricity through gases. Sketch of a theory' by Arthur Schuster
DescriptionSchuster writes: 'In the following pages I give an account of several new phenomena, some of which have a direct bearing on the theory of the discharge of electricity through gases. Although I hope that the experiments may be judged independently of any theory, their description may be rendered a little more clear and interesting if I begin with a short explanation of the theoretical views to which they seem to me to point. These theoretical conclusions will be looked at favourably, I think, by those who have been trained up with the ideas of Faraday and Maxwell; for they must have always considered it likely that the conduction of electricity through gases is more probably due to something resembling the electrolytic conduction in liquids than to the direct passage of electricity from one molecule to another. My experiments with mercury vapour argue very strongly in favour of this view.' A version of this paper was delivered as the Bakerian Lecture for 1884.

Annotations in pencil and ink throughout. Includes three pages of photographs and diagrams and ten loose photographs.

Subject: Chemistry / Electricity

Received 7 May 1884. Read 19 June 1884.

The Bakerian Medal and Lecture is the Royal Society's premier lecture in physical sciences. The lectureship was established through a bequest by Henry Baker of £100 for 'an oration or discourse on such part of natural history or experimental philosophy, at such time and in such manner as the President and Council of the Society for the time being shall please to order and appoint'. The lectureship has been awarded annually since 1775.

A version of this paper was published in volume 37 of the Proceedings of the Royal Society as 'The Bakerian Lecture. Experiments on the discharge of electricity through gases. Sketch of a theory'.
Physical descriptionInk and graphite pencil on paper
Digital imagesView item on Science in the Making
Access statusOpen
Related materialDOI: 10.1098/rspl.1884.0038
Fellows associated with this archive
NA6483Schuster; Sir; Arthur (1851 - 1934)1851 - 1934
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