Henry Cavendish, noted for his discovery of hydrogen, was a “notoriously shy man”. He communicated with his female servants only by notes. By one account, Cavendish had a back staircase added to his house to avoid encountering his housekeeper.
For other people named Henry Cavendish, see Henry Cavendish (disambiguation).
Henry Cavendish FRS (/ˈkævəndɪʃ/; 10 October 1731 – 24 February 1810) was an English natural philosopher, scientist, and an important experimental and theoretical chemist and physicist. He is noted for his discovery of hydrogen, which he termed “inflammable air”. He described the density of inflammable air, which formed water on combustion, in a 1766 paper, On Factitious Airs. Antoine Lavoisier later reproduced Cavendish’s experiment and gave the element its name.
A notoriously shy man, Cavendish was nonetheless distinguished for great accuracy and precision in his researches into the composition of atmospheric air, the properties of different gases, the s… Continue Reading (13 minute read)