(Gr. phosphoros, light bearing; ancient name for the planet Venus when appearing beforesunrise) Brand discovered phosphorus in 1669 by preparing it from urine.
Never found free in nature, it is widely distributed in combination with minerals.Phosphate rock, which contains the mineral apatite, an impure tri-calcium phosphate, is animportant source of the element. Large deposits are found in Russia, in Morocco, and inFlorida, Tennessee, Utah, Idaho, and elsewhere.
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