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A heretical look at the Benzolfest*

  • Günter P. Schiemenz (a1)

Extract

The Benzolfest of 1890 in honour of August Kekulé fell into that economically prosperous, politically peaceful period of European imperialism which is characterized by the splendour of the courts of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Empress of India; Emperor Franz Josef of Austria, King of Hungary; and the German Emperor Wilhelm II, King of Prussia. Whoever could afford it (and even some of those who could not) tried to imitate these models and to participate at least to a modest extent in the glamour of the imperial courts. Merits were honoured by the bestowal of titles, orders and medals, and many an effort to the benefit of the common weal in deeds and money was induced by the prospect of becoming a Privy Councillor (Geheimrat) or a Councillor of Commerce (Kommerzienrat), of being awarded the Order of the Red Eagle [of Prussia] (the fourth class being almost automatically given to a major of the Prussian army who in this peaceful time had never had a chance to distinguish himself, and not so automatically to a distinguished professor on the occasion of his sixtieth birthday), or even of being raised to hereditary nobility, the epithet von added to the name being the permanently visible sign of particular excellence.

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1 Typical is Victor Meyer's situation in 1888. At the inauguration of the new chemical institute at Göttingen, Meyer, forty years old, was awarded the title of Geheimrat by the Prussian government. At that time, he received a call from the government of Baden to succeed Bunsen at Heidelberg. The offer included the title of Geheimrat II. Klasse, which was superior to Geheimer Hofrat and next to Wirklicher Geheimer Rat. The husband of Victor's cousin Marie congratulated him on the bestowal of the Geheimrat title with a somewhat joking hint of even higher honours: ‘Und wenn sie Dich auch noch “von”-en / Und machen zum “Wirklichen” Dich, / Wir bleiben in Treu Dir gesonnen / Und lieben Dich inniglich!’ Meyer replied ‘Nicht wünsch ich, dass sie mich “von”-en, / Noch zum “Wirklichen” machen mich. / Ach! Ein andrer Traum ist zerronnen! / In Göttingen bleibe ich!…Gold, Ruhmsucht, Titel und Ehren, / Sie halten zurücke mich nicht! / Nichts habe ich hier zu begehren. / Ich tu nur die bittere Pflicht!’ Meyer preferred to be addressed as ‘professor’ rather than with his new title of Geheimrat. Meyer, R., Victor Meyer. Leben und Wirken eines deutschen Chemikers und Naturforschers 1848–1897 (= Ostwald, W. (ed.), Grosse Männer. Studien zur Biologie des Genies, iv), Leipzig, 1917, 227–30.

2 Lepsius, B., ‘Festschrift zur Feier des 50jährigen Bestehens der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft und des 100. Geburtstages ihres Begründers August Wilhelm von Hofmann’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1918), 51, Sonderheft; Gothaisches Genealogisches Taschenbuch der Briefadeligen Häuser (1919), 13, 383.

3 Schultz, Gustav, 1882 Privatdozent at the University of Strassburg and co-author of volume 3 of August Kekulé, 's Lehrbuch der Organischen Chemie oder der Chetnie der Kohlenstoffverbindungen, Stuttgart 1882; his portrait: Anschütz, R., August Kekulé, I, Leben and Wirken, Berlin 1929, fig. 90, some biographical notes ibid., 485.

4 Schultz, G., ‘Bericht über die Feier der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft zu Ehren August Kekulé's’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1890), 23, 1265–312.

5 Schöne, Richard, archaeologist, 18401922; 1869 professor in Halle, from 1873 in Berlin in the Ministry of Cultural Affairs, 1880–1905 director general of the Royal Prussian Museums.

6 Emil du Bois-Reymond, physiologist, 1818–96; 1858 professor in Berlin, 1867 permanent secretary of the Royal Prussian Academy of Sciences. His participation in the Benzolfest may be viewed in the light of L. Boltzmann's ironic criticism: ‘Others [than Austrians] are rather different. They believe in honouring themselves by glorifying their great men, and it must be considered moving when in their zeal they exaggerate and out of enthusiasm almost make demi-gods of them though history teaches that they were humans…for example, for du Bois-Reymond the true merits of Helmholtz are not sufficiently great. He is not afraid of adorning him with other birds' feathers, of degrading Robert Mayer, of exaggerating Helmholtz's merits concerning the electromagnetic theory of light, or of producing a phrase with respect to an explanation of the theory of gravity.’ ‘Zur Erinnerung an Josef Loschmidt’, vom Executiv-Comité zur Errichtung eines Loschmidt-Denkmales, Vienna, 1899, 23–4. See also his sarcastic remark on the Berlin Geheimräte, ibid., 25.

7 Möbius, Karl, zoologist, 18251908; 1868 professor in Kiel, , 18871905 director of the Museum of Natural History in Berlin.

8 Later incorporated into the city of Berlin.

9 Jacobsthal, Johann Eduard, architect, 18391902; 1874 professor in Charlottenburg. He constructed the railway stations of Metz, (18741878), Strassburg, (18771884) and Berlin-Alexanderplatz as well as the Joachimsthalsche Gymnasium in Berlin.

10 Virchow, Rudolf, pathologist and anthropologist, 18211902; 1846 prosector at the Charité hospital, 1849 professor in Würzburg, , 1856 in Berlin; member of the scientific deputation of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs and of the Berlin City Council, 1862 Member of the Prussian House of Deputies, 1880–93 of the Reichstag (Fortschrittspartei).

11 von Gossler, Gustav, 18381902; from 1877 Member of the Reichstag (Conservative Parry), 1881 President of the Reichstag, 1879 undersecretary of state of the Ministry of Education, 1881–91 Minister of Cultural Affairs, then Oberpräsident (governor) of Westpreussen, . Gothaisches Genealogisches Taschenbuch, op. cit. (2), 298.

12 Hans Hermann Freiherr von Berlepsch, b. 1843; 1873 Landrat of Kattowitz, , 18771880 Minister of State of the Principality of Schwarzburg-Sondershausen, 1881 Vice President in Koblenz, 1884 Regierungspräsident in Düsseldorf, 1889 Oberpräsident (governor) of the Rhine province, 1890–96 Minister of Commerce. Gothaisches Genealogisches Taschenbuch der Freiherrlichen Häuser (1910) 60, 21, 22.

13 Hermann Lucanus, Friedrich Karl, 18311908, knighted in 1888, law graduate; 1859–88 in the Prussian Ministry of Education, 1881 undersecretary of state, from 1888 chief of the civil cabinet of Wilhelm II. He was raised to nobility on the same day as (von) Siemens, Werner. Gothaisches Genealogisches Taschenbuch, op. cit. (2), 522.

14 Bosse, Robert, 18321901; 1891 Secretary of State of the Imperial Office of Justice, 1892–99 Prussian Minister of Cultural Affairs.

15 Paul Hinschius, professor of protestant church law, 1835–98; professor 1863 in Halle, 1865 Berlin, 1868 Kiel, , 1872 Berlin. He participated in the conferences of the Prussian Ministry of Cultural Affairs for the elaboration of church laws; 1872–81 Member of the Reichstag (National Liberal Parry).

16 von Forckenbeck, Max, 18211892, a leading member of the Fortschrittspartei (Progressive Party), 1866 one of the founders of the National Liberal Party, 1866–73 President of the Prussian House of Deputies, 1873 Lord Mayor of Breslau, 1878–92 of Berlin, since 1867 Member of the Reichstag, , 18741879 its president, 1884 active in the foundation of the Deutschfreisinnige Partei, from 1874 Member of the Prussian House of Lords.

17 Althoff, Friedrich, 18391908; 1870 lawyer, 1871 head of the department of church and school affairs in the Oberpräsidium at Strassburg, 1872 professor at Strassburg, later head of the department for the universities in the Prussian Ministry of Cultural Affairs, 1897 Ministerialdirektor for universities and high schools; Member of the Prussian House of Lords. Meyer, , op. cit. (1), 423, gives 29 February 1839 as his date of birth. However, 1839 was not a leap-year; read 19 February.

18 Helmholtz, Hermann, 18211894, knighted in 1882; 1848 teacher of anatomy at the Academy of Arts in Berlin, professor 1849 in Königsberg, 1855 Bonn, 1858 Heidelberg, 1871 Berlin (of physics), 1888 president of the Physikalisch-technische Reichsanstalt. Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1894), 27, 2643–52 (with his portrait); Meyer, , op. cit. (1), 438.

19 August Kundt, physicist, 1839–94; professor 1868 in Zürich, 1870 Würzburg, 1872 Strassburg, 1888 Berlin. He developed methods to measure the velocity of sound in gases and, therefrom, the specific heats of gases at constant volume and pressure. Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1894), 27, 1374–6.

20 Theodor, Karl Wilhelm Weierstrass, mathematician, 18151897; 1864 professor in Berlin (mathematical analysis). It may be pertinent that Weierstrass, unlike du Bois-Reymond, was a personality who did not care for publicity: ‘Weierstrass…der zu den bedeutendsten Mathematikern des vergangenen Jahrhunderts gerechnet wird. Abgesehen von einem halben Dutzend Aufsätzen in Zeitschriften und einer Zusammenstellung seiner Aufsätze zur Funktionenlehre publizierte Weierstrass nichts; die noch zu seinen Lebzeiten begonnene und von seinen Schülern besorgte Herausgabe der “Gesammelten Werke” basierte auf Vorlesungsmitschriften und erreichte nie die berühmte “Weierstrasssche Strenge”’ (quod libet, catalogue of Nordische Antiquariatsmesse, Hamburg, 1991, 1415).

21 Schultz, , op. cit. (4).

22 Rimbach, E., ‘Das Kekulé-Denkmal in Bonn’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1903), 36, 4614–40.

23 Kekulé und seine Benzolformel. Wizinger-Aust, Vier Vorträge von R., Gillis, J. B., Helferich, B., Wurster, C., Weinheim, 1966.

24 Hafner, K., ‘August Kekulé – dem Baumeister der Chemie zum 150. Geburtstag’, Angewandte Chemie (1979), 91, 685–96, Darmstädter Schriften 46, Darmstadt, , 1980.

25 Kröhnke, F., ‘August Kekulé. Zur Jahrhundertfeier der Benzolformel’, Chemie für Labor und Betrieb (1965), 16, 353–60.

26 Hafner, , op. cit. (24).

27 Richter, F., ‘Adolf v. Baeyer, zur hundertsten Wiederkehr seines Geburtstages’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1935), 68A, 175–80; Wieland, H., ‘Zur hundertsten Wiederkehr von Adolf von Baeyers Geburtstag (31 Oktober 1935)’, Naturwissenschaften (1935), 23, 743; Schmorl, K., ‘Adolf von Baeyer 1835–1917’ (= Grosse Naturforscher, 10), Stuttgart, 1952 (unreliable); Huisgen, R., ‘Adolf von Baeyers wissenschaftliches Werk – ein Vermächtnis’, Angewandte Chemie (1986), 98, 297311; von Bonin, W., Die Nobelpreisträger der Chemie. Ein Kapitel Chemie-Geschichte, München, 1963, 52 (portrait); Gothaisches Genealogisches Taschen-buch, op. cit. (2), 22.

28 Hafner, , op. cit. (24).

29 Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), fig. 12.

30 Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), 65.

31 Kussmaul, Adolf, 18221902; professor of medicine 1857 in Heidelberg, 1859 Erlangen, 1863 Freiburg, 1876 Strassburg. Kussmaul on Kekulé: Kussmaul, A., Aus meiner Dozentenzeit in Heidelberg (ed. Czerny, V.), 2nd edn, Stuttgart, 1908, 61. Portraits of Kussmaul: Kussmaul, A., Jugenderinnerungen eines alien Arztes, 4th edn, Stuttgart, 1900 (painting of Franz Lenbach); ‘Festschrift Herrn Geheimrath Prof. Dr A. Kussmaul in Heidelberg zur Vollendung seines 80. Lebensjahres gewidmet’, Deutscbes Archiv für Klinische Medicin (1902) 73 (frontispiece); Kluge, F. (ed.), Adolf Kussmaul. Seine aktuelle Bedeutung für Innere Medizin und Neurologie, Stuttgart, 1985 (frontispiece, fig. 1).

32 Eichrodt, Ludwig, 18271892; judge (Oberamtsrichter).

33 Das Buch Biedermaier. Gedichte von Ludwig Eichrodt und Adolf Kussmaul sowie ihrem Vorbild, dem ‘alten Dorfschulmeister’ Samuel Friedrich Sauter gesammelt und herausgegeben von Ludwig Eichrodt. Neue, von Friedrich Eichrodt besorgte und von Eduard Ille illustrierte Ausgabe, Stuttgart 1911.

34 Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), 69.

35 Meerwein, H., ‘Richard Anschütz zum Gedächtnis’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1941), 74A, 2974.

36 Anschütz, , op. cit. (3).

37 Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), 133.

38 Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), 141.

39 Meyer, , op. cit. (1), 449; Remane, H., ‘Hermann Kolbe und sein Beitrag zur Chemie des 19. Jahrhunderts, Zeitschrift für Chemie (1984), 24, 393403.

40 Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), 181.

41 Kolbe, H. and Lautemann, E., ‘Ueber die Constitution und Basicität der Salicylsäure’, Annalen der Chemie und Pharmacie (1860), 115, 157206, on 171.

42 Richter, F., ‘K. F. Beilstein, sein Werk und seine Zeit. Zur Erinnerung an die 100. Wiederkehr seines Geburtstages’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1938), 71A, 3555.

43 Reichenbach, E. and Beilstein, F., ‘Untersuchungen über Isomerie in der Benzoëreihe’, Annalen der Chemie und Pharmacie (1864), 132, 137–55.

44 Kekulé, A., ‘Beiträge zur Kenntniss der Salicylsäure und der Benzoësäure’, Annalen der Chemie und Pharmacie (1861), 117, 145–64, on 164.

45 Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), 178–82; II, Abhandlungen, Berichte, Kritiken, Artikel, Reden, 171–86.

46 This is pure scorn, too, because Kolbe held the view that it was impossible to elucidate this.

47 Anschütz, , op. cit. (45).

48 Vorländer, D., ‘Jacob Volhard’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1912), 45, 18551902 (with Volhard's portrait; a different photograph: Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), fig. 108).

49 Kekulé, A., Cassirte Kapitel aus der Abhandlung: Ueber die Carboxytartronsäure and die Constitution des Benzols, Weinheim, 1965: ‘Du kannst Dich weder vom Parteistandpunkt frei machen, noch es unterlassen allerlei schnotterige Redensarten, persönliche u. hämische Bemerkungen einzustreuen’.

50 Ladenburg, A., Lebens-Erinnerungen, Breslau, 1912; Herz, W., ‘Albert Ladenburg’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1912), 45, 3597–644.

51 Alexander M. Butlerow's portrait: Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), fig. 52. His monument is in the Russian city of Kazan.

52 Ladenburg, , op. cit. (50), 38–9.

53 Butlerow, A., Lehrbuch der organischen Chemie zur Einführung in das specielle Studium derselben, Leipzig, 1868.

54 Loschmidt, Joseph, 18211895; 1866–91 professor in Vienna; see: Anschütz, (1913), note 55 below; (1912), note 63 below.

55 Loschmidt, J., Chemische Studien, I. A. Constitutions-Formeln der organisechen Chemie in graphischer Darstellung. B. Das Mariotte'sche Gesetz, Vienna, 1861. The title-page has been reproduced in Kirchhof, F., ‘Joseph Loschmidt und die Benzolformel’, Chemiker-Zeitung (1967), 91, 4851, fig. 1, and correctly quoted by Kayser, C. G., Vollständiges Bücher-Lexicon, Leipzig, 1866, xvi, L–Z, 51. The Austrian National Library owns a copy with the baffling variant ‘in geographischer Darstellung’ which was recently reprinted (Aldrich Chemical Company, Milwaukee WI, 1989). Anschütz's new edition of 1913 was obviously based on a copy with ‘in graphischer Darstellung’: Loschmidt, J., Konstitutions-Formeln der organischen Chemie in graphischer Darstellung (ed. Anschütz, R.) (= Ostwald's Klassiker der exakten Wissenschaften, 190), Leipzig, 1913.

56 Graebe, C., Geschichte der organischen Chemie, Berlin 1920, i, 235–9.

57 Graebe, , op. cit. (56), 238.

58 Pietsch, E. with Beyer, E., ‘Leopold Gmelin – der Mensch, sein Werk und seine Zeit, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1939), 72A, 533. In 1988, the West German postal authority honoured the second centenary of his birth by a special stamp with his portrait.

59 Graebe, , op. cit. (56), 236.

60 This device has a long tradition in heraldry.

61 Though speculating about the connectivity of the six carbon atoms in benzene, Loschmidt did not arrive at a conclusion. He therefore treated the ‘benzene nucleus’ as a sort of hexavalent superatom, represented by a ball, hence in print by a circle, the diameter of which took account of the ‘atomic weight’ of 72 and therefore exceeded that of the sulphur ball (circle). The proper meaning of all ‘circles’ as balls is obvious from Loschmidt's text and was correctly understood by Graebe, , op. cit. (56), 236–7, 286–8. Much later, the benzene ball (circle) was wrongly taken to represent the connectivity of the carbon atoms. From this error, the opinion arose that Loschmidt rather than Kekulé conceived the ‘benzene ring’: Wiswesser, W. J., ‘Johann Joseph Loschmidt (1821–1895): a forgotten genius. Benzene rings and much more in 1861’, Aldrichimica Acta (1989), 22, 1718; ‘Johann Joseph Loschmidt (1821–1895): Ein vergessenes Genie. Der Benzolring und so manches andere im Jahre 1861’, Österreichische Chemie-Zeitschrift (1990), 91, 47–8; ‘Johann Josef Loschmidt (1821–1895) – Zapomenutý génius. Benzenové jádro a mnohem víe v roce 1861’, Chemické Listy pro vědu a pr mysl (1990), 84, 1062–6; Bader, A., ‘Loschmidt, not Kekulé, published first benzene ring diagrams’, paper presented at the ACS-Symposium ‘The Kekulé Benzoifest 100 Years Later’, Boston MA, USA, 23 April 1990 (and elsewhere). Noe, C. R. and Bader, A., ‘Loschmidt, Josef’, in The Kekulé Riddle. A Challenge for Chemists and Psychologists (ed. Wotiz, J. H.), Clearwater FL, Vienna IL, 1993, 221–45; Noe, C. R. and Bader, A., ‘Facts are better than dreams’, Chemistry in Britain (1993), 126–8. A detailed refutation was presented by Schiemenz, G. P., ‘Good-bye, Kekulé? Eine Anamnese der Loschmidt-Legende’, (a) Symposium of the Division of History of Chemistry of the Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker, Tübingen, Germany, 22 March 1991, (b) First ‘Mineralkontor’ International Conference on the History of Chemistry and Chemical Industry, Veszprém, Hungary, 15 August 1991, (c) Department of Chemistry of the University of Tartu, Estonia, 2 October 1991, (d) Department of Chemistry of the University of Oldenburg, Germany, 6 February 1992, (e) University of Rostock, Germany, 13 February 1992. Schiemenz, G. P., ‘Goodbye, Kekulé? Josef Loschmidt und die monocyclische Struktur des Benzols’, Naturwissenschaftliche Rundschau (1993), 46, 85–8.

62 Anschütz, (ed.) (1913), op. cit. (55), e.g. 112–13, 122, 126.

63 Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), 305, revising his previous opinion: Anschütz, R., ‘Über Loschmidts graphische Formeln, ein Beitrag zur Geschichte der Benzol-Theorie’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1912), 45, 539–53; Anschütz, (1913), op. cit. (55), 105.

64 In a letter to Erlenmeyer: Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), 305. Like Erlenmeyer, Kekulé ‘was in command of a striking, never failing humour; part of his mentality was an ironic trait which became obvious also to strangers by way of the sarcastic smile which often played around his lips’ (Meyer, , op. cit. (1), 433). For a proper assessment of Kekulé's modesty, one has to bear in mind that he himself applied for his ennoblement: Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), 645 (‘Not without exhibiting a sort of satisfaction, Kekulé showed us the precious certificate of ennoblement’, ibid., 646–7); Štrbáňová, S. and Janko, J., ‘Bohuslav Raýman, Friedrich August Kekule a Česká Akademie Věd a umění’, Dějiny Věd a Techniky (1990), 23, 93105; ‘Die Umstände der Nobilitierung F. A. Kekules’, Chemie in unserer Zeit (1991), 25, 208–13.Štrbáňová, S. and Janko, J., ‘Kekulé's character in the light of his ennoblement’, in Wotiz, op. cit. (61), 195210.

65 Baeyer's description of Kekulé's early benzene formula is a severe distortion, too: Schiemenz, G. P., ‘Where did Kekulé find “his” benzene formula?’, paper presented at the ACS-Symposium ‘The Kekulé Benzolfest 100 Years Later’, Boston MA, USA, 23 April 1990. G. P. Schiemenz, in Wotiz, op. cit. (61), 103–22.

66 Wizinger-Aust, R., ‘August Kekulé, Leben und Werk. Erkenntnisse und Probleme um eine chemische Vision’, in op. cit. (23), 732, on 29.

67 Fischer, E., ‘Aus meinem Leben’ in Gesammelte Werke (ed. Bergmann, M.), Berlin, 1922, 50; Hoesch, K., ‘Emil Fischer. Sein Leben und sein Werk’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1921), 54, Sonderheft, 44.

68 Meyer, , op. cit. (1), 459; Hückel, W., ‘Otto Wallach 1847–1931’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1961), 94, pp. VIICVIII; von Bonin, , op. cit. (27), portrait, 55. A Swedish postage stamp of 1970 dedicated to the Nobel Prize winners of 1910 depicts him together with van der Waals. Cf. Kauffman, G. B., ‘Chemistry on stamps: Nobel laureates in chemistry. A philatelic survey, 1. 1901–1910; 2. 1911–1934; 3. 1935–1988’, Journal of Chemical Education (1990), 67, 451–6, 569–74, 774–81.

69 Helferich, B., Zur Geschichte der Chemie in Bonn, op. cit. (23), 5578, on 66.

70 Helferich, , op. cit. (23), 68; cf. Hückel, , op. cit. (68), p. XXIV.

71 Conrad, M., ‘Emil Erlenmeyer’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1910), 43, 3645–64 (with Erlenmeyer's portrait).

72 Anschütz, , op. cit. (3), 412. For an appreciation of the meaning of Handwerk, see the stringent criticism of Swiss students by Meyer, V.: Meyer, , op. cit. (1), 78. The phrase ‘Each man to his own’ (‘Sehe jeder, wie er's treibe’) is a quotation from Goethe, J. W.'s poem Beherzigung.

73 Anschütz, R., op. cit. (3), 411.

74 Herre, F., Kaiser Friedrich III. Deutschlands liberale Hoffnung. Eine Biographie, Stuttgart 1987.

75 Gothaisches Genealogisches Taschenbuch, op. cit. (2), 383.

76 Gothaisches Genealogisches Taschenbuch, op. cit. (2), 721.

77 According to Hoesch, , op. cit. (67), 115, it was during such a merry banquet that Hofmann died on 6 May 1892. However, Landolt, H., Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1892), 25, 1575–7, and J. Volhard, ibid. (1902), 35, Sonderheft, 1196, p. 192, reported that he died on 5 May in his home shortly after his return from a faculty meeting. The date 5 May 1892 is confirmed in op. cit. (2), 383.

78 ‘dem etwas eingeschlafenen Hofmannschen Institute’.

79 Hoesch, , op. cit. (67), 115.

80 Huisgen, , op. cit. (27), 304: ‘Zu den Sternstunden der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft gehörte das Benzolfest, das 1890 zu Ehren von August Kekulé gefeiert wurde.’

81 Schultz, , op. cit. (4).

82 Rupe, H., Adolf von Baeyer als Lehrer and Forscher, Erinnerungen aus seinem Privatlaboratorium (Sammlung chemischer und chemisch-technischer Vorträge NF 15), Stuttgart, 1932, 10.

83 Baeyer, A., ‘Ueber die Constitution des Benzols’, Justus Liebig's Annalen der Chemie (1888), 245, 103–90; Ladenburg, A., ‘Ueber die Constitution des Benzols’, ibid. (1888), 246, 382–4.

84 Ladenburg, A., ‘Ueber Benzolformeln’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1890), 23, 1007–11. Baeyer's reply: Baeyer, A., ‘Ueber die Constitution des Benzols, 5. Ueber die Reductionsproducte der Phtalsäure’, Justus Liebig's Annalen der Chemie (1890), 258, 145219.

85 Meyer, , op. cit. (1), 175; Meyer, R., ‘Victor Meyer. 1848–1897’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1908), 41, 4505–718, on 4573.

86 Meyer, , op. cit. (1), 250; Meyer, (1908), op. cit. (85), 4601; see Meyer, V., ‘Grundzüge der Stereochemie’, Chemiker-Zeitung (1893), 17, 1869–76.

87 Meyer, V., ‘Ergebnisse und Ziele der stereochemischen Forschung’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1890), 23, 567619.

88 Fischer, E., ‘Synthesen in der Zuckergruppe’, Berichte der Deutschen Chemischen Gesellschaft (1890), 23, 2114–41.

89 Hoesch, , op. cit. (67), 115; Fischer, , op. cit. (67), 141. To be sure, both Fischer and Hoesch mentioned that the faculty, though not putting him in the first position on the list, really wanted Fischer to be called. In a letter dated 15 July 1896, Victor Meyer commented on the death of Kekulé: ‘Vorgestem ist Kekulé gestorben! Ein ungeheurer Verlust an einem Menschen, freilich nicht mehr für die Wissenschaft, für die er schon lange stumm war’; Meyer, , op. cit. (1), 301–2; Meyer, (1908), op. cit (85), 4628.

90 Hoesch, , op. cit. (67), 117; Fischer, , op. cit. (67), 140–1.

* Presented at the ACS-Symposium The Kekulé Benzolfest 100 Years Later, Boston MA, USA, 23 April 1990.

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