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Illustration showcasing symbolic representations of chemical elements through artistic icons and their respective atomic symbols.

Ask AI: Explain how the elements symbols were created and represented

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Question: Explain how the elements symbols were created and represented

Asked by inabi

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Elements are represented by chemical symbols that come from their Latin or Greek names or the scientist who discovered them. The system of chemical symbols we use today is mostly due to the proposals of John Dalton, a British scientist born in the 18th century. He suggested that each element should be symbolized by the first one or two letters of its Latin name. For example, hydrogen's symbol is H, as it is derived from the Latin name 'Hydrogenium'. Similarly, the symbol for iron is Fe, from its Latin name 'Ferrum'. Some elements that were known in the ancient world have symbols derived from their Greek names. For example, the symbol for copper is Cu, which is derived from its Greek name 'Kyprios'. In some cases, however, the symbol of an element is derived from the name of the scientist who discovered it or contributed much to its understanding. For example, the element einsteinium (Es) was named after Albert Einstein; curium (Cm), after the Curies; and fermium (Fm) after Enrico Fermi. Moreover, when a new element is discovered, the discoverer suggests a name and symbol to the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC), who then reviews these suggestions for formal approval. So in summary, the symbols for elements are generally derived from the first one or two letters of their Latin or Greek name, or in some cases, named in honor of notable scientists.

Answered by gpt-4

Oct. 7, 2023, 11:29 p.m.

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This article was generated in part by one of OpenAI’s large-scale language-generation model, answering user inabi's question. Images were generated with OpenAI's AI model, DALL·E 2. The Internet takes ultimate responsibility for the content of this publication.
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Published: Saturday, October 7, 2023

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