London is the capital and largest city of both England and the United Kingdom. Standing on the River Thames in the south-east of England, at the head of its 50-mile estuary leading to the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans; the City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains boundaries that follow its medieval limits. The City of Westminster is an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of the London Assembly. London is considered to be one of the world's most important global cities and has been termed the world's most powerful, most desirable, most influential, most visited, most expensive, sustainable, most investment friendly, most popular for work, the most vegetarian friendly city in the world. London exerts a considerable impact upon the arts, education, fashion, healthcare, professional services and development, tourism and transportation.
London ranks 26 out of 300 major cities for economic performance. It is one of the largest financial centres and has either the fifth or sixth largest metropolitan area GDP, it is the most-visited city as measured by international arrivals and has the busiest city airport system as measured by passenger traffic. It is the leading investment destination, hosting more international retailers and ultra high-net-worth individuals than any other city. London's universities form the largest concentration of higher education institutes in Europe. In 2012, London became the first city to have hosted three modern Summer Olympic Games. London has a diverse range of people and cultures, more than 300 languages are spoken in the region, its estimated mid-2016 municipal population was 8,787,892, the most populous of any city in the European Union and accounting for 13.4% of the UK population. London's urban area is the second most populous in the EU, after Paris, with 9,787,426 inhabitants at the 2011 census.
The population within the London commuter belt is the most populous in the EU with 14,040,163 inhabitants in 2016. London was the world's most populous city from c. 1831 to 1925. London contains four World Heritage Sites: the Tower of London. Other landmarks include Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, Piccadilly Circus, St Paul's Cathedral, Tower Bridge, Trafalgar Square and The Shard. London has numerous museums, galleries and sporting events; these include the British Museum, National Gallery, Natural History Museum, Tate Modern, British Library and West End theatres. The London Underground is the oldest underground railway network in the world. "London" is an ancient name, attested in the first century AD in the Latinised form Londinium. Over the years, the name has attracted many mythicising explanations; the earliest attested appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae, written around 1136. This had it that the name originated from a supposed King Lud, who had taken over the city and named it Kaerlud.
Modern scientific analyses of the name must account for the origins of the different forms found in early sources Latin, Old English, Welsh, with reference to the known developments over time of sounds in those different languages. It is agreed; this was adapted into Latin as Londinium and borrowed into Old English, the ancestor-language of English. The toponymy of the Common Brythonic form is much debated. A prominent explanation was Richard Coates's 1998 argument that the name derived from pre-Celtic Old European *lowonida, meaning "river too wide to ford". Coates suggested that this was a name given to the part of the River Thames which flows through London. However, most work has accepted a Celtic origin for the name, recent studies have favoured an explanation along the lines of a Celtic derivative of a proto-Indo-European root *lendh-, combined with the Celtic suffix *-injo- or *-onjo-. Peter Schrijver has suggested, on these grounds, that the name meant'place that floods'; until 1889, the name "London" applied to the City of London, but since it has referred to the County of London and Greater London.
"London" is sometimes written informally as "LDN". In 1993, the remains of a Bronze Age bridge were found on the south foreshore, upstream of Vauxhall Bridge; this bridge either reached a now lost island in it. Two of those timbers were radiocarbon dated to between 1750 BC and 1285 BC. In 2010 the foundations of a large timber structure, dated to between 4800 BC and 4500 BC, were found on the Thames's south foreshore, downstream of Vauxhall Bridge; the function of the mesolithic structure is not known. Both structures are on the south bank. Although there is evidence of scattered Brythonic settlements in the area, the first major settlement was founded by the Romans about four years after the invasion
Society of Jesus
The Society of Jesus is a scholarly religious congregation of the Catholic Church for men founded by Ignatius of Loyola and approved by Pope Paul III. The members are called Jesuits; the society is engaged in evangelization and apostolic ministry in 112 nations. Jesuits work in education, intellectual research, cultural pursuits. Jesuits give retreats, minister in hospitals and parishes, sponsor direct social ministries, promote ecumenical dialogue. Saint Ignatius of Loyola, a Basque nobleman from the Pyrenees area of northern Spain, founded the society after discerning his spiritual vocation while recovering from a wound sustained in the Battle of Pamplona, he composed the Spiritual Exercises to help others follow the teachings of Jesus Christ. In 1534, Ignatius and six other young men, including Francis Xavier and Peter Faber and professed vows of poverty and obedience, including a special vow of obedience to the Pope in matters of mission direction and assignment. Ignatius's plan of the order's organization was approved by Pope Paul III in 1540 by a bull containing the "Formula of the Institute".
Ignatius was a nobleman who had a military background, the members of the society were supposed to accept orders anywhere in the world, where they might be required to live in extreme conditions. Accordingly, the opening lines of the founding document declared that the society was founded for "whoever desires to serve as a soldier of God to strive for the defence and propagation of the faith and for the progress of souls in Christian life and doctrine." Jesuits are thus sometimes referred to colloquially as "God's soldiers", "God's marines", or "the Company", which evolved from references to Ignatius' history as a soldier and the society's commitment to accepting orders anywhere and to endure any conditions. The society participated in the Counter-Reformation and in the implementation of the Second Vatican Council; the Society of Jesus is consecrated under the patronage of Madonna Della Strada, a title of the Blessed Virgin Mary, it is led by a Superior General. The headquarters of the society, its General Curia, is in Rome.
The historic curia of Ignatius is now part of the Collegio del Gesù attached to the Church of the Gesù, the Jesuit mother church. In 2013, Jorge Mario Bergoglio became the first Jesuit to be elected Pope, taking the name Pope Francis; as of 2012, the Jesuits formed the largest single religious order of priests and brothers in the Catholic Church. The Jesuits have experienced a decline in numbers in recent decades; as of 2017 the society had 16,088 members, 11,583 priests and 4,505 Jesuits in formation, which includes brothers and scholastics. This represents a 42.6 percent decline since 1977, when the society had a total membership of 28,038, of which 20,205 were priests. This decline is most pronounced in Europe and the Americas, with modest membership gains occurring in Asia and Africa. There seems to be no "Pope Francis effect" in counteracting the fall of vocations among the Jesuits; the society is divided into 83 provinces along with six independent regions and ten dependent regions. On 1 January 2007, members served in 112 nations on six continents with the largest number in India and the US.
Their average age was 57.3 years: 63.4 years for priests, 29.9 years for scholastics, 65.5 years for brothers. The current Superior General of the Jesuits is Arturo Sosa; the society is characterized by its ministries in the fields of missionary work, human rights, social justice and, most notably, higher education. It operates colleges and universities in various countries around the world and is active in the Philippines and India. In the United States the Jesuits have historical ties to 28 colleges and universities and 61 high schools; the degree to which the Jesuits are involved in the administration of each institution varies. As of September 2018, 15 of the 28 Jesuit universities in the US had non-Jesuit lay presidents. According to a 2014 article in The Atlantic, "the number of Jesuit priests who are active in everyday operations at the schools isn’t nearly as high as it once was". Worldwide it runs 172 colleges and universities. A typical conception of the mission of a Jesuit school will contain such concepts as proposing Christ as the model of human life, the pursuit of excellence in teaching and learning, lifelong spiritual and intellectual growth, training men and women for others.
Ignatius laid out his original vision for the new order in the "Formula of the Institute of the Society of Jesus", "the fundamental charter of the order, of which all subsequent official documents were elaborations and to which they had to conform." He ensured that his formula was contained in two papal bulls signed by Pope Paul III in 1540 and by Pope Julius III in 1550. The formula expressed the nature, community life, apostolate of the new religious order, its famous opening statement echoed Ignatius' military background: Whoever desires to serve as a soldier of God beneath the banner of the Cross in our Society, which we desire to be designated by the Name of Jesus, to serve the Lord alone and the Church, his spouse, under the Roman Pontiff, the Vicar of Christ on earth, after a solemn vow of perpetual chastity and obedience, keep what follows in mind. He is a member of a Society founded chiefly for this purpose: to strive for the defence and propagation of the faith and for the progress of souls in Christian life and doctrine, by means of public preaching and any other ministration whatsoever of the Word of God, further by means of ret
Lancashire is a ceremonial county in North West England. The administrative centre is Preston; the county has an area of 1,189 square miles. People from Lancashire are known as Lancastrians; the history of Lancashire begins with its founding in the 12th century. In the Domesday Book of 1086, some of its lands were treated as part of Yorkshire; the land that lay between the Ribble and Mersey, Inter Ripam et Mersam, was included in the returns for Cheshire. When its boundaries were established, it bordered Cumberland, Westmorland and Cheshire. Lancashire emerged as a major industrial region during the Industrial Revolution. Liverpool and Manchester grew into its largest cities, with economies built around the docks and the cotton mills respectively; these cities dominated the birth of modern industrial capitalism. The county contained the collieries of the Lancashire Coalfield. By the 1830s 85% of all cotton manufactured worldwide was processed in Lancashire. Accrington, Bolton, Bury, Colne, Manchester, Oldham, Preston and Wigan were major cotton mill towns during this time.
Blackpool was a centre for tourism for the inhabitants of Lancashire's mill towns during wakes week. The historic county was subject to a significant boundary reform in 1974 which created the current ceremonial county and removed Liverpool and Manchester, most of their surrounding conurbations to form the metropolitan and ceremonial counties of Merseyside and Greater Manchester; the detached northern part of Lancashire in the Lake District, including the Furness Peninsula and Cartmel, was merged with Cumberland and Westmorland to form Cumbria. Lancashire lost 709 square miles of land to other counties, about two fifths of its original area, although it did gain some land from the West Riding of Yorkshire. Today the ceremonial county borders Cumbria to the north, Greater Manchester and Merseyside to the south, North and West Yorkshire to the east; the county palatine boundaries remain the same as those of the pre-1974 county with Lancaster serving as the county town, the Duke of Lancaster exercising sovereignty rights, including the appointment of lords lieutenant in Greater Manchester and Merseyside..
The county was established in 1182 than many other counties. During Roman times the area was part of the Brigantes tribal area in the military zone of Roman Britain; the towns of Manchester, Ribchester, Burrow and Castleshaw grew around Roman forts. In the centuries after the Roman withdrawal in 410AD the northern parts of the county formed part of the Brythonic kingdom of Rheged, a successor entity to the Brigantes tribe. During the mid-8th century, the area was incorporated into the Anglo-Saxon Kingdom of Northumbria, which became a part of England in the 10th century. In the Domesday Book, land between the Ribble and Mersey were known as "Inter Ripam et Mersam" and included in the returns for Cheshire. Although some historians consider this to mean south Lancashire was part of Cheshire, it is by no means certain, it is claimed that the territory to the north formed part of the West Riding of Yorkshire. It bordered on Cumberland, Westmorland and Cheshire; the county was divided into hundreds, Blackburn, Lonsdale and West Derby.
Lonsdale was further partitioned into Lonsdale North, the detached part north of the sands of Morecambe Bay including Furness and Cartmel, Lonsdale South. Lancashire is smaller than its historical extent following a major reform of local government. In 1889, the administrative county of Lancashire was created, covering the historic county except for the county boroughs such as Blackburn, Barrow-in-Furness, Wigan and Manchester; the area served by the Lord-Lieutenant covered the entirety of the administrative county and the county boroughs, was expanded whenever boroughs annexed areas in neighbouring counties such as Wythenshawe in Manchester south of the River Mersey and in Cheshire, southern Warrington. It did not cover the western part of Todmorden, where the ancient border between Lancashire and Yorkshire passes through the middle of the town. During the 20th century, the county became urbanised the southern part. To the existing county boroughs of Barrow-in-Furness, Bolton, Burnley, Liverpool, Oldham, Rochdale, Salford, St. Helens and Wigan were added Warrington and Southport.
The county boroughs had many boundary extensions. The borders around the Manchester area were complicated, with narrow protrusions of the administrative county between the county boroughs – Lees urban district formed a detached part of the administrative county, between Oldham county borough and the West Riding of Yorkshire. By the census of 1971, the population of Lancashire and its county boroughs had reached 5,129,416, making it the most populous geographic county in the UK; the administrative county was the most populous of its type outside London, with a population of 2,280,359 in 1961. On 1 April 1974, under the Local Government Act 1972, the administrative county was abolished, as were the county boroughs; the urbanised southern part became part of two metropolitan counties and Greater Manchester. The new county of Cumbria incorporates the Furness exclave; the boroughs of Liverpool, Knowsley, St. Helens and Sefton were included in Merseyside. In Greater Manchester the successor boroughs were
Virtual International Authority File
The Virtual International Authority File is an international authority file. It is a joint project of several national libraries and operated by the Online Computer Library Center. Discussion about having a common international authority started in the late 1990s. After a series of failed attempts to come up with a unique common authority file, the new idea was to link existing national authorities; this would present all the benefits of a common file without requiring a large investment of time and expense in the process. The project was initiated by the US Library of Congress, the German National Library and the OCLC on August 6, 2003; the Bibliothèque nationale de France joined the project on October 5, 2007. The project transitioned to being a service of the OCLC on April 4, 2012; the aim is to link the national authority files to a single virtual authority file. In this file, identical records from the different data sets are linked together. A VIAF record receives a standard data number, contains the primary "see" and "see also" records from the original records, refers to the original authority records.
The data are available for research and data exchange and sharing. Reciprocal updating uses the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting protocol; the file numbers are being added to Wikipedia biographical articles and are incorporated into Wikidata. VIAF's clustering algorithm is run every month; as more data are added from participating libraries, clusters of authority records may coalesce or split, leading to some fluctuation in the VIAF identifier of certain authority records. Authority control Faceted Application of Subject Terminology Integrated Authority File International Standard Authority Data Number International Standard Name Identifier Wikipedia's authority control template for articles Official website VIAF at OCLC
National Library of Australia
The National Library of Australia is the largest reference library in Australia, responsible under the terms of the National Library Act for "maintaining and developing a national collection of library material, including a comprehensive collection of library material relating to Australia and the Australian people." In 2012–13, the National Library collection comprised 6,496,772 items, an additional 15,506 metres of manuscript material. It is located in Parkes, Canberra, ACT; the National Library of Australia, while formally established by the passage of the National Library Act 1960, had been functioning as a national library rather than a Parliamentary Library since its inception. In 1901, a Commonwealth Parliamentary Library was established to serve the newly formed Federal Parliament of Australia. From its inception the Commonwealth Parliamentary Library was driven to development of a national collection. In 1907 the Joint Parliamentary Library Committee under the Chairmanship of the Speaker, Sir Frederick William Holder defined the objective of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Library in the following words: The Library Committee is keeping before it the ideal of building up, for the time when Parliament shall be established in the Federal Capital, a great Public Library on the lines of the world-famed Library of Congress at Washington.
The present library building was opened on 15 August 1968 by Prime Minister John Gorton. The building was designed by the architectural firm of Bunning and Madden in the Late Twentieth Century Stripped Classical style; the foyer is decorated in marble, with stained-glass windows by Leonard French and three tapestries by Mathieu Matégot. The building was listed on the Australian Commonwealth Heritage List on 22 June 2004. In 2012–13 the Library collection comprised 6,496,772 items, with an estimated additional 2,325,900 items held in the manuscripts collection; the Library's collections of Australiana have developed into the nation's single most important resource of materials recording the Australian cultural heritage. Australian writers and illustrators are sought and well represented—whether published in Australia or overseas; the Library's collection includes all formats of material, from books, journals and manuscripts to pictures, maps, oral history recordings, manuscript papers and ephemera.
92.1% of the Library's collection has been catalogued and is discoverable through the online catalogue. The Library has digitized over 174,000 items from its collection and, where possible, delivers these directly across the Internet; the Library is a world leader in digital preservation techniques, maintains an Internet-accessible archive of selected Australian websites called the Pandora Archive. The Library collects material produced by Australians, for Australians or about the Australian experience in all formats—not just printed works—books, newspapers, posters and printed ephemera—but online publications and unpublished material such as manuscripts and oral histories. A core Australiana collection is that of John A. Ferguson; the Library has particular collection strengths in the performing arts, including dance. The Library's considerable collections of general overseas and rare book materials, as well as world-class Asian and Pacific collections which augment the Australiana collections.
The print collections are further supported by extensive microform holdings. The Library maintains the National Reserve Braille Collection; the Library houses the largest and most developing research resource on Asia in Australia, the largest Asian language collections in the Southern hemisphere, with over half a million volumes in the collection, as well as extensive online and electronic resources. The Library collects resources about all Asian countries in Western languages extensively, resources in the following Asian languages: Burmese, Persian, Japanese, Korean, Manchu, Thai and Vietnamese; the Library has acquired a number of important Western and Asian language scholarly collections from researchers and bibliophiles. These collections include: Australian Buddhist Library Collection Braga Collection Claasz Collection Coedes Collection London Missionary Society Collection Luce Collection McLaren-Human Collection Otley Beyer Collection Sakakibara Collection Sang Ye Collection Simon Collection Harold S. Williams Collection The Asian Collections are searchable via the National Library's catalogue.
The National Library holds an extensive collection of manuscripts. The manuscript collection contains about 26 million separate items, covering in excess of 10,492 meters of shelf space; the collection relates predominantly to Australia, but there are important holdings relating to Papua New Guinea, New Zealand and the Pacific. The collection holds a number of European and Asian manuscript collections or single items have been received as part of formed book collections; the Australian manuscript collections date from the period of maritime exploration and settlement in the 18th century until the present, with the greatest area of strength dating from the 1890s onwards. The collection includes a large number of outstanding single items, such as the 14th century Chertsey Cartulary, the journal of James Cook on the HM Bark Endeavour, inscribed on t
The Reverend is an honorific style most placed before the names of Christian clergy and ministers. There are sometimes differences in the way the style is used in different countries and church traditions; the Reverend is called a style but is and in some dictionaries called a title, form of address or title of respect. The style is sometimes used by leaders in non-Christian religions such as Judaism and Buddhism; the term is an anglicisation of the Latin reverendus, the style used in Latin documents in medieval Europe. It is the gerundive or future passive participle of the verb revereri, meaning " to be revered/must be respected"; the Reverend is therefore equivalent to The Venerable. It is paired with a modifier or noun for some offices in some religious traditions: Anglican archbishops and most Roman Catholic bishops are styled The Most Reverend. With Christian clergy, the forms His Reverence and Her Reverence is sometimes used, along with its parallel in direct address, Your Reverence; the abbreviation HR is sometimes used.
In traditional and formal English usage, both British and American, it is still considered incorrect to drop the definite article, before Reverend. In practice, the is not used in both written and spoken English; when the style is used within a sentence, the is in lower-case. The usual abbreviations for Reverend are Rev'd; the Reverend is traditionally used as an adjectival form with first names and surname. Use of the prefix with the surname alone is considered a solecism in traditional usage: it would be as irregular as calling the person in question "The Well-Respected Smith". In some countries Britain, Anglican clergy are acceptably addressed by the title of their office, such as Vicar, Rector, or Archdeacon. In the 20th and 21st centuries it has been common for reverend to be used as a noun and for clergy to be referred to as being either a reverend or the reverend or to be addressed as Reverend or, for example, Reverend Smith or the Reverend Smith; this has traditionally been considered grammatically incorrect on the basis that it is equivalent to referring to a judge as being an honourable or an adult man as being a mister.
Although it is formally an incorrect use of the term, Reverend is sometimes used alone, without a name, as a reference to a member of the clergy and treated as a normal English noun requiring a definite or indefinite article but such usage is incorrect. It is incorrect to form the plural Reverends; some dictionaries, however, do place the noun rather than the adjective as the word's principal form, owing to an increasing use of the word as a noun among people with no religious background or knowledge of traditional styles of ecclesiastical address. When several clergy are referred to, they are styled individually. In some churches Protestant churches in the United States, ordained ministers are addressed as Pastor. Pastor, however, is considered more correct in some churches when the minister in question is the head of a church or congregation. Male Christian priests are addressed as Father or, for example, as Father John or Father Smith. However, in official correspondence, such priests are not referred to as Father John, Father Smith, or Father John Smith, but as The Reverend John Smith.
Father as an informal title is used for Roman Catholic and Old Catholic priests and for many priests of the Anglican and Lutheran churches. In England, however Roman Catholic priests were referred to as "Mr" until the 20th century except when members of a religious order. "Mr" is still not incorrect for priests of the Church of England. Some female Anglican or Old Catholic priests use the style The Reverend Mother and are addressed as Mother; the Reverend may be modified to reflect ecclesiastical rank. Modifications vary across religious countries; some common examples are: Religious sisters may be styled as Reverend Sister, though this is more common in Italy than in, for example, the United States. They may be addressed as Sister. Deacons are addressed as The Reverend Deacon, or Father Deacon, or Deacon, if ordained permanently to the diaconate; the Reverend Mister may be used for seminiarians who are ordained to the diaconate, before being ordained presbyters. Priests, whether diocesan, or in an order of canons regular, in a monastic or a mendicant order, or clerics regular The Reverend or The Reverend Father.
Protonotaries Apostolic, Prelates of Honor and Chaplains of His Holiness: The Reverend Monsignor. Priests with various grades of jurisdiction above pastor (e.g. vicars general, judicial vicars, ecclesiastical judges, episcopal vicars, provincials of religious orders of priests, rectors or presidents of colleges and universities, priors of monasteries, d
Gas lighting is production of artificial light from combustion of a gaseous fuel, such as hydrogen, carbon monoxide, butane, ethylene, or natural gas. The light is produced either directly by the flame by using special mixes of illuminating gas to increase brightness, or indirectly with other components such as the gas mantle or the limelight, with the gas functioning as a fuel source. Before electricity became sufficiently widespread and economical to allow for general public use, gas was the most popular method of outdoor and indoor lighting in cities and suburbs. Early gas lights were ignited manually, but many designs are self-igniting. Gas lighting today is used for camping, where the high energy density of a hydrocarbon fuel, combined with the modular nature of canisters allows bright and long lasting light to be produced cheaply and without complex equipment. In addition, some urban historical districts retain gas street lighting, gas lighting is used indoors or outdoors to create or preserve a nostalgic effect.
Early lighting fuels consisted of olive oil, fish oil, whale oil, sesame oil, nut oil, similar substances. These were the most used fuels until the late 18th century. Chinese records dating back 1,700 years note the use of natural gas in the home for light and heat via bamboo pipes to the dwellings; the ancient Chinese of the Spring and Autumn period made the first practical use of natural gas for lighting purposes around 500 B. C. where they used bamboo pipelines to transport and carry both brine and natural gas for many miles. Public illumination preceded the adoption of gaslight by centuries. In 1417, Sir Henry Barton, Lord Mayor of London, ordained "lanterns with lights to be hung out on the winter evenings between Hallowtide and Candlemasse." Paris was first lit by an order issued in 1524, and, in the beginning of the 16th century, the inhabitants were ordered to keep lights burning in the windows of all houses that faced the streets. In 1668, when some regulations were made for improving the streets of London, the residents were reminded to hang out their lanterns at the usual time, and, in 1690, an order was issued to hang out a light, or lamp, every night as soon as it was dark, from Michaelmas to Christmas.
By an Act of the Common Council in 1716, all housekeepers, whose houses faced any street, lane, or passage, were required to hang out, every dark night, one or more lights, to burn from six to eleven o'clock, under the penalty of one shilling as a fine for failing to do so. In coal mining and escaping gases were known for their adverse effects rather than their useful qualities. Coal miners described two types of gases, one called the choke damp and the other fire damp. In 1667, a paper detailing the effects of these gases was entitled, "A Description of a Well and Earth in Lancashire taking Fire, by a Candle approaching to it. Imparted by Thomas Shirley, Esq an eye-witness." Stephen Hales was the first person who procured a flammable fluid from the actual distillation of coal. His experiments with this object are related in the first volume of his Vegetable Statics, published in 1726. From the distillation of "one hundred and fifty-eight grains of Newcastle coal, he states that he obtained one hundred and eighty cubic inches of air, which weighed fifty-one grains, being nearly one third of the whole."
These results seemed to have passed without notice for several years. In the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society in 1733, some properties of coal-gas are detailed in a paper called, "An Account of the Damp Air in a Coal-pit of Sir James Lowther, sunk within Twenty Yards of the Sea." This paper contained some striking facts relating to the flammability and other properties of coal-gas. The principal properties of coal-gas were demonstrated to different members of the Royal Society, showed that after keeping the gas some time, it still retained its flammability; the scientists of the time still saw no useful purpose for it. John Clayton, in an extract from a letter in the Philosophical Transactions for 1735, calls gas the "spirit" of coal and discovered its flammability by an accident; this "spirit" happened to catch fire, by coming in contact with a candle as it escaped from a fracture in one of his distillatory vessels. By preserving the gas in bladders, he entertained his friends, by exhibiting its flammability.
It took many years of development and testing before gas lighting for the stage was commercially available. Gas technology was installed in just about every major theatre in the world, but gas lighting was short-lived. It took nearly 200 years for gas to become accessible for commercial use. A Flemish alchemist, Jan Baptista van Helmont, was the first person to formally recognize gas as a state of matter, he would go on to identify several types including carbon dioxide. Over one hundred years in 1733, Sir James Lowther had some of his miners working on a water pit for his mine. While digging the pit they hit a pocket of gas. Lowther took it home to do some experiments, he noted, "The said air being put into a bladder … and tied close, may be carried away, kept some days, being afterwards pressed through a small pipe into the flame of a candle, will take fire, burn at the end of the pipe as long as the bladder is pressed to feed the flame, when taken from the candle after it is so lighted, it will continue burning till there is no more air left in the bladder to supply the flame."
Lowther had discovered the principle behind gas lighting. In the 18th century William Murdoch stated: "the gas obtained by distillation fro