A Semiology of the Sign System of Chemistry

  • Georges Mounin
Part of the Topics in Contemporary Semiotics book series (TICSE, volume 158)


For the last twenty years Luis Prieto, in his published work in French, has reiterated that the systematic study of the codes (other than natural languages) which were invented by men for communication purposes is in and of itself an undertaking essential for an understanding of both the laws of communication in general and of the mechanisms of these systems of communication—the totality of which would make up the (Saus-surian) semiology of communication (Prieto, 1966, 1968, 1975). Among these systems, the symbols of chemistry—referred to as such for a long time—and their combinatory rules constitute a very old code or series of codes (Crosland, 1962). Up to now this code has not been subjected to a genuine semiological study, except for an essay by Dagognet (1969, see Mounin, 1970) which is more literary or poetical and metaphysical than scientific.


Natural Language Prussian Blue Combinatory Rule Linguistic Sign Chemical Symbol 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Georges Mounin
    • 1
  1. 1.University of ProvenceAix-MarseillesFrance

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