Michael Faraday - Experimental researches in electricity (1832)
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Although we know nothing of what an atom is, yet we cannot resist forming some idea of a small particle, which represents it to the mind... there is an immensity of facts which justify us in believing that the atoms of matter are in some way endowed or associated with electrical powers, to which they owe their most striking qualities, and amongst them their mutual chemical affinity.
I have long held an opinion, almost amounting to conviction, in common I believe with many other lovers of natural knowledge, that the various forms under which the forces of matter are made manifest have one common origin; or, in other words, are so directly related and mutually dependent, that they are convertible, as it were, one into another, and possess equivalents of power in their action.
I hardly dare venture, even in the most hypothetical form, to ask whether the Aurora Borealis and Australis may not be the discharge of electricity, thus urged towards the poles of the earth, from whence it is endeavoring to return by natural and appointed means above the earth to the equatorial regions.
Such is... the progress which electricity has made in the last thirty years: chemistry and magnetism have successively acknowledged its overruling influence: and it is probable that every effect depending upon the powers of inorganic matter, and perhaps most of those related to vegetable and animal life, will ultimately be found subordinate to it.