Skip to content
Volume 37, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 0032-1400


A critical study is presented here of the contribution made by Joseph Louis Proust, Professor of Chemistry and Metallurgy at the Royal Artillery School in Segovia, to the early investigation of platinum. His researches were carried out in Spain, mainly at the Segovian House of Chemistry during the latter years of the eighteenth century, and at the platinum laboratory in Madrid in the early years of the nineteenth century. These investigations resulted in three papers about the metal; one of them is almost unknown, but it gives a procedure which he had established for the possible purification of platinum. In the other two, Proust incorrectly interpreted the results of his experimental work, but he showed a systematic approach to his scientific investigations and paid great attention to detail, being the only investigator of platinum in Spain at that time to do so.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...



  1. Ulloa A., Juan J., and Marin A. Relación Histórica del Viaje a la America Meridional”, Madrid, 1748, 2, (1), p. 606 [Google Scholar]
  2. McDonald D. See for example A History of Platinum”, Johnson Matthey, London, 1962; [Google Scholar]
  3. McDonald D., and Hunt L. B. A History of Platinum and its Allied Metals”, Johnson Matthey, London, 1982 [Google Scholar]
  4. Maffei E. Centenario de la Escuela de Minas de España, 1777–1877”, ETSI de Minas, Madrid, 1977, p. 14 [Google Scholar]
  5. Galán A., and Moreno R. Platinum Metals Rev., 1992, 36, (1), 40 [Google Scholar]
  6. A report of the investigations undertaken by the three named scientists has been prepared for publication elsewhere
  7. Fagés Virgili J. Los Químicos de Vergara y sus Obras”, 1909, Maiden speech at Real Academia de Ciencias Exactas, Físicas y Naturales, p. 59 [Google Scholar]
  8. McDonald D., and Hunt L. B. A History of Platinum and its Allied Metals”, Johnson Matthey, London, 1982, p. 93 [Google Scholar]
  9. Proust L. Anal. Real Lab. Quirn, de Segovia, 1795, 1, 114 [Google Scholar]
  10. Proust L. Anal História Natural, 1799, 1, 51 [Google Scholar]
  11. Proust L. Annal. deChim., 1804, 49, 177 [Google Scholar]
  12. Archivo de Indias, Leg.835, 1797, pp. 323362
  13. Ibid., pp. 141186, doc.5j
  14. Silvan L., and Sebastian S. Quoted by Boletín Real Soc. Bascongada de Amigos del Paris, 1969, 183 [Google Scholar]
  15. Stohmann F., and Kerl B. Gran Enciclopedia de Química Industrial”, Barcelona, 1930, Francisco Seix, Tomo11, p. 457 [Google Scholar]
  16. Garcia Fernández D. Anal. Historia Natural, 1799, 1, pp. 4651 [Google Scholar]

Data & Media loading...

  • Article Type: Research Article
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error