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Joseph Priestley (1733-1804)
Priestly is credited, along with Carl Scheele of Sweden, with the discovery of oxygen. A clergyman/chemist, Priestley called the gas he discovered, "dephlogisticated air." It was Antoine Lavoisier who named it oxygen.

A friend of Benjamin Franklin, Priestley experimented with electricity before turning his attention to chemistry in the early 1770s. His other discoveries include hydrochloric acid, nitrous oxide (laughing gas) and sulfur dioxide.

Priestley was a minister in Leeds and later Birmingham. His nonconformist views and support for the French Revolution led to his home and chapel being burned in 1791. He moved to Pennsylvania three years later.

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