[kôl′bə](Adolphe Wilhelm) Hermann 1818-1884
German chemist who was the first to synthesize an organic compound from inorganic materials (1843-45). He also developed an electrolytic procedure for the preparation of alkanes, and in 1859 synthesized salicylic acid from coal tar, which laid the foundation for the development of aspirin.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.