what had Priestly done to introduce the mint plant without disturbing the experiment set up?
- Priestley observed that a burning candle would get extinguished in a closed bell jar.
- In August 1771, Joseph Priestley conducted another set of experiments where he placed a mint plant into a transparent closed space with a burning candle that eventually burned out the air until it soon went out.
- Priestly discovered that the relit candle burned perfectly well in the air that previously would not support it.
- In another experiment conducted in 1772, Priestley kept a mouse in a jar of air until it collapsed. He found that a mouse kept with a plant would survive.
- After 27 days, he relit the extinguished candle again.
- These kinds of observations led Priestley to offer an interesting hypothesis that plants restore to the air whatever breathing animals and burning candles remove - what was later coined by Lavoisier as "oxygen".
- In these experiments, Priestly was the first to observe that plants release oxygen into the air by the process of photosynthesis.
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