One is tempted to say that the chemists who viewed solutions as compounds differed from their successors only over a matter of definition. In one sense that may have been the case but that sense is not the one that makes definitions mere conventional conveniences. In the 18th century mixtures were not fully distinguished from compounds by operational tests and perhaps they could have been but even if chemists had looked for such a test they would have sought criteria that made the solution a mixture. For Dalton if the mixture did not have a fixed proportion it ipso facto was only a mixture - so any proof of a counter example to his theory was just interpreted as a mixture. It is difficult to see the revolutionary nature of science because current history or text books are written from the current paradigm and reinterpret the past as instances of the present view.
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This note was uploaded on 11/09/2011 for the course PSY PSY2012 taught by Professor Scheff during the Fall '09 term at Broward College.