matter: Early Theories of Matter
In ancient times various theories were suggested about the nature of matter. Empedocles held that all matter is made up of four
elements—earth, air, fire, and water. Leucippus and his pupil Democritus proposed an atomic basis of matter, believing that all matter is built up from tiny particles differing in size and shape. Anaxagoras, however, rejected any theory in which matter is viewed as composed of smaller constituents, whether atoms or elements, and held instead that matter is continuous throughout, being entirely of a single substance.
- The Properties of Matter
- The States of Matter
- Early Theories of Matter
- Modern Theory of Matter
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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