Category: Science & Nature
aluminium: (al-yoo-min-i-um) n aluminum. Who is correct about this one is a matter for some debate. We can at least say that Hans Ørsted, the Danish gentleman who discovered it in 1824, had based its name on the Latin word “alumus,” denoting the mineral alum. The difference in spelling seems to have originated when very early printed material advertising his talks on the subject contained the two different spellings in error. The general consensus seems to be that he had originally intended using the “British” spelling (borne out by International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry’s use of it, and the “ium” suffix that already graced many metallic elements at the time), but as he clearly didn’t make any efforts to correct anyone, we could conclude that he didn’t care too much either way.