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Accidental Discoveries: Saccharin



Accidental Discoveries: Saccharin

A Short Reader

Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   6.46

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    calorie-free, compounds, saccharin, unwashed, residue, analyze, calories, especially, chemist, proper, ever, widespread, somehow, such, market, working
     content words:    Constantin Fahlberg, Johns Hopkins University, After Fahlberg, First World War, If Fahlberg


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Accidental Discoveries: Saccharin
By Joyce Furstenau
  

1     Have you ever licked your fingers after finishing off a tasty treat? In 1879, a chemist named Constantin Fahlberg was working on a project at Johns Hopkins University to find uses for coal tar. After a day at work in the lab, Fahlberg went home for supper. His wife had prepared rolls to go along with the meal. After Fahlberg took a bite of a roll, he thought it tasted especially sweet. He asked his wife if she had added anything to sweeten the rolls. She told him she hadn't. She thought the rolls tasted the same as always.
 
2     Fahlberg wondered where the extra sweetness came from. He looked at his unwashed hands. He thought perhaps they still had residue from his experiments with coal tar on them. Somehow he figured out that the chemicals on his hands might be the source of the sweetness.

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