Who was the first person to come up with the idea of an atom?
A bust of Democritus (or Democrites), who came up with the idea of indivisible atoms. The earliest known proponent of anything resembling modern atomic theory was the ancient Greek thinker Democritus. He proposed the existence of indivisible atoms as a response to the arguments of Parmenides, and the paradoxes of Zeno.
Democritus first suggested the existence of the atom but it took almost two millennia before the atom was placed on a solid foothold as a fundamental chemical object by John Dalton (1766-1844). Although two centuries old, Dalton's atomic theory remains valid in modern chemical thought. 1) All matter is made of atoms.
- Democritus (c.460–c.370 bc) Greek philosopher and scientist. Only fragments of his work remain. He contributed to the theory of atomism, propounded by his teacher Leucippus, by suggesting that all matter consisted of tiny, indivisible particles.
- James Chadwick
- This boldness identifies the great scientist if the predictions are later found to be accurate. One such person was Russian chemist Dmitri Mendeleev. Incidentally, although he is often regarded as the father of the Periodic Table, Mendeleev himself called his table, or matrix, the Periodic System.
- Dimitri Mendeleev
Democritus was a Greek philosopher (470-380 B.C.) who is the father of modern atomic thought. He proposed that matter could NOT be divided into smaller pieces forever. John Dalton created the very first atomic theory.
- An English Chemist and Mathematician – John Dalton was the first person to scientifically prove that matter consists of indivisible discrete particles. Dalton developed an atomic theory in 1803. Subsequently, Ernest Rutherford, a famous scientist of Briton developed a modern concept of the atomic structure.
- In 1911, Niels Bohr earned his PhD in Denmark with a dissertation on the electron theory of metals. Right afterwards, he went to England to study with J.J. Thomson, who had discovered the electron in 1897.
- Discovered the neutron. He was the head of British scientists who worked on the development of the atomic bombs during WW II. He also found the missing mass of the atom's nucleus by finding the sum of the protons and neutrons.
Updated: 3rd October 2019