Foundations of Chemistry

, 7:203 | Cite as

A Revised Periodic Table: With the Lanthanides Repositioned

  • Michael LaingEmail author


The lanthanide elements from lanthanum to lutetium inclusive are incorporated into the body of the periodic table. They are subdivided into three sub-groups according to their important oxidation states: La to Sm, Eu to Tm, Yb and Lu, so that Eu and Yb fall directly below Ba; La, Gd, Lu form a column directly below Y; Ce and Tb fall in a vertical line between Zr and Hf. Pm falls below Tc; both are radioactive, and not naturally occurring. The elements with easily attained 2+ and 4+ oxidation states are grouped and clearly differentiated. Gadolinium has an important position as the centre of four triads in the block of elements that surround it– La, Gd, Lu; Ba, Gd, Hf; Eu, Gd, Tb; Yb, Gd, Ce. This new arrangement has the advantages of compactness, simplicity and clarity – there are no tie lines; and important oxidation states of these metals are emphasized. The actinides are also accommodated within this system, and element 114 falls naturally below lead in Group 14.


Physical Chemistry Oxidation State Vertical Line Periodic Table Important Position 
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Copyright information

© Springer 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Pure and Applied ChemistryUniversity of NatalDurbanRepublic of South Africa

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