Tiny Sepuku by Ken Cursoe

Tiny Sepuku

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  1. Lynne B

    Lynne B GoComics PRO Member said, almost 3 years ago

    In 1806, Jane Marcet wrote and published the first real popular chemistry textbook, Conversations in Chemistry, in which the elements of that science are familiarly explained and illustrated by Experiments. It was written in a dialog form, as a series of conversations between pupils and the imaginary teacher, “Mrs B”. From a precis included in a Guardian writeup on women in early science:



    …While discussing the composition of water, Mrs B points out that oxygen has “greater affinity” for other elements than hydrogen. Caroline instantly grasps the romantic possibilities of this: “Hydrogen, I see, is like nitrogen, a poor dependent friend of oxygen, which is continually forsaken for greater favourites.” Mrs B starts to reply — “The connection or friendship as you choose to call it is much more intimate between oxygen and hydrogen in the state of water” – then sees where this is going and hastily breaks off: “But this is foreign to our purpose.”

    With a suppressed giggle, Caroline has discovered “sexual chemistry” and the reader will remember forever the composition of a water molecule: two hydrogen atoms in unrequited love with an oxygen atom (H2O). Caroline adds suggestively: “I should extremely like to see water decomposed…”

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