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An Electrical Alphabet


Annraoi de Paor

A is for Ampère, who measured the forces

’Twixt charges in motion in neighbouring courses.

B is for Bell, who phoned Watson in Boston,

Now shrunken to deci, lives on with one l gone.

C is for Coulomb, hung charges in air,

With torsional balance found force inverse square.

D is Descartes, who thought while in bed

That he was, and thus came up with x, y and z.

E is for Edison, ten ninety three

Were his patents—the phonograph best known of these?

F is for Faraday: priceless deduction

His Law of Electromagnetic Induction.

G is for Gilbert, Liz One’s physician,

The Earth is a magnet, he claimed with precision.

H is for Henry, who lived in D.C.,

Where’er an inductor is found, there is he.

I is for Ireland, whose sons caused a stir,

Like Kelvin from Belfast and Parsons from Birr.

J is for Joule—Salford’s ale-brewing son

Showed that heat and mechanical motion are one.

K is for Kirchhoff, that pioneer stout—

Mesh v’s sum to zero and i’s in must out.

L is Lagrange, who finds motion’s equation—

Laplace who then solves it with his transformation.

M is for Maxwell—and Murphy, whose laws

Rule all our endeavours and oft give us pause.

N is for Newton, whose apple-banged cranium

Enclosed the supremest of  brains last millennium.

O is for Ohm, for resistors who states,

Amps to volts, constant temp, pure proportion relates.

P is for Pixii, who first by rotation

Made Faraday’s laws yield sustained generation.

Q is the queue who are hunting the quark—

Are you real, sub-electron, or Joycean lark?

R is for Röntgen, whose rays’ penetrations

Let surgeons correctly site planned operations.

S is for Steinmetz, whose complex notation

Gives steady solutions for sine excitation.

T is for Thévenin, pioneer Gaul,

Showed circuits to eo with Zo must fall.

U are the underdog maybe today:

Tomorrow Dame Fortune may lighten your way.

V is for Volta: his cells gave ’em jolts.

Connecting in series he stepped up the volts.

W, Weber, per one metre square,

One Tesla, is ten to four Gausses—so there!

X, be it unknown in any equation,

Is found by Inspir and its twin Perspir Ation.

Y, Thomas Young, Foreign Sec. of Roy. Soc.—

One secret of light—sometimes waves—he unlocked.

Z is for zest, of armatures sing—

Zenobie Theophilé Gramme and his ring.

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