Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 66.djvu/489

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PSM V66 D489 Physalia the yacht of the florida station.png

The Physalia, the Yacht of the Florida Station.

nearly as rapidly without them. Money so expended is certainly not wasted, but it is doubtful whether it is used to the best advantage. We must acknowledge that in America we do not so much lack money and equipment as men who will devote themselves unreservedly to scholarship and research. How money can be used to produce and assist such men is a problem yet to be! solved.



While Germany has called a third chemist from outside the boundaries of the empire supposed to contain the greatest chemists of the world, the death of this truly great and truly German chemist must be doubly felt, and the earnest words of warning repeatedly uttered by him should make a new and lasting impression; for surely something must be amiss in the boasted perfection of German chemistry when Germany finds it necessary to call on Russia, Holland and Sweden to find chemists for the chairs in her greatest universities. A remarkable critical article—the last one written by Clemens Winkler—was printed in the January number of The Popular Science Monthly; it forcibly presents the judgment of the discoverer of germanium on one of the dominant phases of chemical investigation of the present day, in which again German chemists are seen to occupy an extreme position, though they in this field also are merely followers, not originators. Since American chemists are wont to follow their, largely German, teachers, this critical paper deserves special attention in this country.

Clemens Winkler seemed predestined for chemistry. His ancestors for many generations were identified with the mining and smelting industries of old Freiberg; his father, Kurt Winkler, was especially prominent in this chemical industry and had been greatly favored as one of the last foreign students admitted to the private laboratory of Berzelius at Stockholm. The perfection of the analytical work of Clemens Winkler may be traced to this origin, which he himself was proud to remember, and which may also account for the fact, that some of his most critical analytical work was first published in the transactions of the Swedish Academy of Sciences.

Another favorable condition influencing Winkler's career was the fact that two of the most prominent men