SIR HUMPHRY DAVY - AUTOGRAPH LETTER SIGNED 01/24/1822 - HFSID 102559
HUMPHRY DAVY. ALS: "H. Davy", 3p, 7¼x9, conjoined leaves. London, January 24, 1822. To Bertie Bertie Greathead. Begins: "My dear Sir". In full:
Sale Price $850.00
HUMPHRY DAVY. ALS: "H. Davy", 3p, 7¼x9, conjoined leaves. London, January 24, 1822. To Bertie Bertie Greathead. Begins: "My dear Sir". In full: "It will give me much pleasure should it be in my power to promote your wishes & to attend to your recommendation of Mr. Swainson. As yet nothing is decided by the Trustees with respect to Dr Beach & it is possible that an arrangement may be made in which his place will be filled by a scientific gentleman of the highest character already in the museum. Should another officer be appointed in the Nat. History department the nomination will rest in the Archbishop of Canterbury & the Speaker of the House of Commons (father & son): but probably the recommendation of the scientific trustees could have weight with them. [2 lines illegible, but mentioning "many candidates"] in laying Mr Swainsons (sic) claims should there be an opportunity before the Masters. Lady Davy is [2 words illegible] at Nice after a kind of usual winter warmer [word missing] and November, I trust she is beginning to think of a [illegible] in London with the idea of returning. My best respects to Mrs & Miss Bertie Greathead." Verso of integral leaf addressed by Davy to: "Bertie Bertie Greathead Esqr/Guy's Cliff./near Warwick". At the time of this letter, British chemist Humphry Davy (1778-1829) was President of the Royal Society (1820-1827). Davy, who pioneered the study of electrochemistry, discovered the exhilarating effect of nitrous oxide (laughing gas) when inhaled in 1799. Electrolytic methods also led him to discover the elements potassium (1807), sodium (1807), calcium (1807-1808) and barium (1808). He also recognized the element nature of chlorine, explaining its bleaching action, and gave it its name (1810) and showed that diamonds are carbon. Davy, who was knighted in 1812, also invented the miner's safety lamp, called the Davy Lamp, in 1815.Remnant of red wax seal beneath address. Lightly creased with folds. Lightly soiled. Light show through of ink, which is smudged at 1 word. Mounting remnants at blank corners. 2 holes, ½x1-inch at blank right margin and ¾x¾-inch, touch 3 lines of writing. 2 words removed from opening of seal.
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