Fable: The Patriotic Element
141 years ago the Russian chemist Dmitry Ivanovich Mendeleyev left a space below silicon in his periodic table of the chemical elements.
127 years ago, a chemistry professor realised that in arggyrodite crystals the sum of the component elements silver and sulphur did not add up to the correct total. He showed that the unknown element in the argyrodite crystals was the correct occupant of Mendeleyev’s space.
Because, ten years earlier, a French scientist had discovered and patriotically named it gallium, the chemistry professor also named the new element in honour of his country.
Moral: Everyone stands on others’ shoulders