Aug 21, 2012

Wordology, Aluminum

Aluminum is the older term, while aluminium was created later by the British to make it sound more like the other elements. Here is a timeline:

1808: Sir Humphrey Davy isolates the metal for the first time. He calls it alumium
1812: Sir Humphrey decides to change the spelling of his element: he renames it to aluminum (the term adopted in the United States)
1812: British scientists dislike the new name and change it to aluminium to match the other classic sounding elements, such as Magnesium, Helium, Potassium, etc.

That's my symposium on aluminum. - Incidentally, the Greek symposium was originally a drinking party and forum for men of good family to debate, plot, boast, or simply to revel with others.