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Robert Best Ede's chemistry set, England, 1840-1900

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Credit: Robert Best Ede's chemistry set, England, 1840-1900. Science Museum, London. Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

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This chemistry set was put together by the chemist Robert Best Ede in the 1800s in Surrey, England. The chemistry set cost £3 3s, which was quite expensive for its time. It contained all the equipment needed to copy the experiments in John Joseph Griffin’s Chemical Recreations – a popular manual of experimental chemistry, which was first published in 1823. The equipment included scales, weights, a glass retort, test tubes, spatula, an evaporating dish, spirit lamp, litmus paper, filter paper and tripod stand. The set also included 71 chemicals and reagents in powder and liquid form. Some of the chemicals’ names might seem surprising. For instance, turmeric powder is more familiar in cooking rather than chemistry. Here, turmeric paper was also used to test for alkalis. maker: Wedgwood Place made: England, United Kingdom

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