Skip to content

Please be aware that some material may contain words, descriptions or illustrations which will not reflect current scientific understanding and may be considered in today's context inaccurate, unethical, offensive or distressing.


Wright and Thompson write: 'It is well known that when metallic copper is brought into contact simultaneously with atmospheric air and aqueous solution of ammonia, rapid oxidation is set up, the copper oxide formed dissolving in the liquid, producing a blue solution of ammoniacal cupric oxide, or cuprammonium hydroxide. Whilst investigating processes for the manufacture of this fluid (now used commercially on a considerable scale) we noticed that if the air supply be greatly in deficiency relatively to the bulk of the copper, under certain conditions the solution is but little coloured, containing copper dissolved principally as cuprous, and not as cupric, oxide.'

Annotations in pencil and ink. Includes one diagram of experimental apparatus.

Subject: Chemistry / Physics

Received 10 March 1887. Read 31 March 1887.

A version of this paper was published in volume 42 of the Proceedings of the Royal Society as 'Note on the development of voltaic electricity by atmospheric oxidation'.

Reference number
Earliest possible date
Physical description
Ink and graphite pencil on paper
Page extent
10 pages

Creator name

Charles Romley Alder Wright

View page for Charles Romley Alder Wright

Use this record


Charles Romley Alder Wright, Paper, 'Note on the development of voltaic electricity by atmospheric oxidation' by C R [Charles Romley] Alder Wright and C Thompson, 1887, PP/10/27, The Royal Society Archives, London,, accessed on 17 June 2024

Link to this record

Embed this record

<iframe src="" title="Paper, 'Note on the development of voltaic electricity by atmospheric oxidation' by C R [Charles Romley] Alder Wright and C Thompson" allow="fullscreen" frameborder="0" width="100%" height="500px"></iframe>

Related Publications


This item is part of:

Related Fellows

Explore the collection

  • Proceedings Papers

    Dates: 1882 - 1894

    The archival collection known as 'Proceedings Papers' is comprised of manuscripts and occasional proofs of scientific papers sent to the Royal Society which were read before meetings of Fellows and printed in full in the Proceedings of the Royal Society.

    View collection