58. Cerium - Elementymology & Elements Multidict

Elementymology & Elements Multidict

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Cerium – Zer – Cérium – Cério – セリウム – Церий – 鈰
Multilingual dictionary

Cerium Latin

— Germanic
Serium Afrikaans
Cerium Danish
Zer German
Cerium English
Cerium Faroese
Cerium Frisian (West)
Serín Icelandic
Zer Luxembourgish
Cerium Dutch
Cerium Norwegian
Cerium Swedish

— Italic
Zerio Aragonese
Tseriumu Aromanian
Ceriu Asturian
Ceri Catalan
Cério Spanish
Cérium French
Ceri Friulian
Cerio Galician
Cerio Italian
Céri Lombard
Ceri Occitan
Cério Portuguese
Ceriu Romanian - Moldovan

— Slavic
Церий [Cerij] Bulgarian
Cerij[um] Bosnian
Цэрый [cèryj] Belarusian
Cer Czech
Cerij Croatian
Cer Kashubian
Цериум [Cerium] Macedonian
Cer Polish
Церий [Cerij] Russian
Cér Slovak
Cerij Slovenian
Церијум [Cerijum] Serbian
Церій [cerij] Ukrainian

— Baltic
Ceris Lithuanian
Cerijs Latvian
Ceris Samogitian

— Celtic
Seriom Breton
Ceriwm Welsh
Ceiriam Gaelic (Irish)
Ceiriam Gaelic (Scottish)
Kerrium Gaelic (Manx)
Keryum Cornish

— Other Indo-European
Δημητριο [dimitrio] Greek
Ցերիում [ts'erium] Armenian
Cerium[i] Albanian

— Indo-Iranian/Iranian
Seryûm Kurdish
Церий [cerij] Ossetian
Серий [Ceri'] Tajik

— Indo-Iranian/Indo-Aryan
সেরিয়াম [seriẏāma] Bengali
سریم [srym] Persian
સીરિયમનો [sīriyamano] Gujarati
सेरियम [seriyama] Hindi

Tseerium Estonian
Cerium Finnish
Cérium Hungarian
Церий [Cerij] Komi
Церий [Cerij] Mari
Цери [ceri] Moksha
Tseerium Võro

Serium Azerbaijani
Цери [Ceri] Chuvash
Церий [cerij] Kazakh
Церий [Cerij] Kyrgyz
Цери [ceri] Mongolian
Seryum Turkish
سېرىي [seriy] Uyghur
Seriy Uzbek

Other (Europe)
Zerioa Basque
ცერიუმი [c'eriumi] Georgian

سيريوم [sīriyūm] Arabic
סריום [serium] Hebrew
Sirjum, ²Ċerju Maltese

Sṳ (鈰) Hakka
セリウム [seriumu] Japanese
세륨 [seryum] Korean
ซีเรียม [sīriam] Thai
Xeri Vietnamese
[shi4 / si5] Chinese

Ceryo Cebuano
Serium Indonesian
Cerium Māori
Serium Malay

Other Asiatic
സെറിയം [seṟiyam] Malayalam
-- [--] Tamil

Selu Lingala
Seriamo Sesotho
Seri Swahili

Cerio Nahuatl

Seryu Quechua

Serimi Sranan Tongo

Cerio Esperanto

New names
Cerion Atomic Elements
Lanthdos Dorseyville
memory peg

Shiny gray metal which readily oxidizes to form a green oxide
melting point 799 °C; 1470 °F
boiling point 3426 °C; 6199 °F
density 6.66 g/cc; 415.58 pounds/cubic foot
1803 Wilhelm Hisinger & Jöns Jakob Berzelius, Sweden / Martin H. Klaproth, Germany
Ceres, asteroid discovered in 1801 and named after the Roman goddess of agriculture

History & Etymology

The story of ceria and all new earth within started with the report on the "heavy stone of Bastnäs" by the mineralogist Axel Fredrik Cronstedt of 1751. Vilhelm Hisinger (1766-1852) belonging to the family owning the Bastnäs mine, sent at the age of 15 samples of this tungsten (Swedish for "heavy stone") from this mine to Carl Scheele who found nothing new. In 1803 Vilhelm Hisinger, now ironmaster, together with Jöns Jakob Berzelius (1779-1848) reinvestigated cerite, as the "heavy stone of Bastnäs" later was named, expecting to find yttria, the new earth which was six years before discovered by Johan Gadolin in a dense black mineral (cf. Yttrium).

They isolated an earth similar to yttria but recognized it was distinct. They gave the new earth the name ceria in honour of Ceres, the first asteroid, discovered two years previous, in 1801, by Giuseppe Piazzi. Ceres was in Roman mythology the goddess of agriculture.

Their report was sent to Adolph Ferdinand Gehlen (1775-1815) in Germany to be published in his Neues Allgemeines Journal der Chemie. In order to establish priority, it was also printed in Swedish as a small pamphlet issued in only 50 copies, which are now of extreme rarity.

Independently, Martin Heinrich Klaproth (1743-1817) analyzed tungsten from Bastnäs, he called the new earth ochroite. Klaproth presented also his results in Gehlenís Journal, where his article appeared in an issue just before that containing the report of Hisinger and Berzelius.

It is not known at which exact time Gehlen received each paper for publication, but in his letter to Hisinger in May 1804 Gehlen gives Berzelius and Hisinger the honor of having discovered a new metal and as a consequence, their suggested name has prevailed. Klaproth suggested the more correct name Cererium, but this name was not accepted. Nowadays it is generally accepted that the discovery took place simultaneously and independently. Hisinger, Berzelius and Klaproth are usually named as co-discovers of Cerium.

Thirty-six years later, in 1839, Mosander showed that the Cerium oxide isolated by these researchers was composed of at least two oxides, for one of which he retained the name ceria and the second he called lanthana, which subsequently in 1842 was shown to consist of lanthana and the new earth didymia. Mosander announced the results of his research in a paper held in July 1842 in Stockholm. An English translation was published in the Philosophical Magazine, and after this a German version in Poggendorf's Annalen: "Ueber die das Cerium begleitenden neuen Metalle Lanthanium und Didymium, so wie über die mit der Yttererde vorkommenden neuen Metalle Erbium und Terbium" (On the new metals Lanthanum and Didymium, accompanying Cerium, and on the metals Erbium and Terbium occurring with yttria) (note) (see scheme above, and further Lanthanum).

Alternative name

In Greek the name Δημητριο [dimitrio] is used after Δημητερ [Demeter], the Greek equivalent of Ceres.

See also: Chronological list of discovery of the rare earths and their names


Chemistianity 1873
CERIUM, a metal with intermixing Oxides,
Is in gray powder that pressure makes lustrous:
It soon oxides in air, or cold water.
J. Carrington Sellars, Chemistianity, 1873, p. 131
Further reading
  • Mary Elvira Weeks, Discovery of the Elements, comp. rev. by Henry M. Leicester (Easton, Pa.: Journal of Chemical Education, 1968), pp. 525-532 & 667-699.
  • Seltene Erden. Gmelins Handbuch der anorganische Chemie, 8. Aufl.; System-Nummer 39 (1938).
  • Lauri Niinistö, "Discovery and Separation of Rare Earths". In Rare Earths, ed. Regino Sáez Puche & Paul A. Caro, 25-42. Madrid: Editorial Complutense, 1997.
  • Lauri Niinistö, "Swedish Contributions to the Discovery of Elements: Part 2: The Work of Berzelius." ERES Newsletter, vol. 10, no. 1 (31 August 1999). (on-line).

Sources Index of Persons Index of Alleged Elements