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Green glass Woulfe bottle, Europe, 1851-1900

A Woulfe bottle is used during chemical analysis to pass gases through a liquid and is named after Peter Woulfe (1727?-1803), an English chemist – although he may have based his design on an existing piece of glassware. These iconic glass bottles can have two or three necks which are used in series and would be connected with tubes.

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Glossary: chemistry

The branch of science that studies substances which constitute matter with the aim of discovering their properties, how they react, and the uses and products of such reactions.

Glossary: Woulfe bottle

laboratory glassware invented by Peter Woulf (1727-1805); jar with two necks used by a chemist to run a reagent through one opening and collect a gaseous product from the other; bottle was also used as a bubbler to scrub or purify injected gas; Bottle corks were often sealed (or luted) to prevent leaks using almond paste, linseed meal (or mixtures of both), white lead, and plaster of Paris.