The only letter not appearing on periodic table is ‘J’

Periodic table

What is the scientific reasoning behind why the letter ‘J’ is not included in the periodic table?

The element symbols are derived from one of four sources:

The German name for an element. (Wolfram instead of Tungsten)
The Latin name for an element. (Aurum instead of gold, Argentum instead of silver, hygrargentum for mercury)
The Greek name of an element (Oxygen, Hydrogen, Carbon, Neon)
The latinization of a name or place of importance to nuclear chemistry or atomic theory (Rutherfordium, Einsteinium, Americium, Moscovium)
The most common are 2 and 3, and neither Greek nor Latin have Js. Very few things stuck with their German names (Jod was symboled Iodine) and no one’s really got a ‘J’ name that really stuck with nuclear chemistry that’s got an element named after them.

In some countries (e.g., Norway, Poland, Sweden, Serbia, Croatia), the element iodine is known by the name jod. However, the periodic table still uses the IUPAC symbol I for the element.

J is just not a common letter, outside of biblical names. And in Latin itself it doesn’t exist except as a pretty I and seeing as scientific symbols are generally designed to avoid linguistic barriers, Latin and Greek tends to be prefered. So there isn’t likely to be a J element.

1 Comment on "The only letter not appearing on periodic table is ‘J’"

  1. Nice thinking.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.