Log in

No account? Create an account
Off in the distance
my journal
May 2016

The Bellinghman
Date: 2005-06-29 13:10
Subject: I am a chemistry geek
Security: Public
Tags:chemistry, geek, stockholm
We were on Vaxholm, a pleasant small archipelagan town/island to the east of Stockholm. (It scrubs up well in the summer sun, with the ferry boats coming and going, and the painted houses glowing in the sun.) It wasn't immediately obvious what there is to see, so we wandered round to the tourist information office to find out what was around.

The most obvious place was the fortress, a few hundred metres away on the nextdoor island. But as I was scanning the list of local places, I saw Ytterby, on the island of Resarö.

That's two islands away, and required us to take a bus to Engan, change there, and get off at a junction slightly in the middle of nowhere.

(Oh, these islands are quite close together - the bits of sea separating them are sometimes only a few yards wide, and have simple bridges or causeways connecting them. With no tides, and storm waves either, you often don't even notice you're crossing some sea, except for seeing water on both sides.)

We walked down into Ytterby and Ytterbystrand. They're delightful places to have houses - views out over the water and marinas, well spaced houses, all looking extremely prosperous in the summer sunshine.

Oh, so what was so special about Ytterby?

Do you know of any other place in the world that had four different chemical elements named after it? Yes, this small village is the source of the names Yttrium, Ytterbium, Erbium and Terbium.
Post A Comment | 6 Comments | | Flag | Link

User: k425
Date: 2005-06-29 12:38 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I am a Swedish geek. And that's how I knew about Ytterby!
Reply | Thread | Link

Sheep with a guitar
User: sbp
Date: 2005-06-29 12:41 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I knew, sorta. We used to have web servers called Erbium and Terbium.
Reply | Thread | Link

User: vatine
Date: 2005-06-29 13:15 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
"Outer village" was also the site where Holmium was discovered (named after the latin name for Stockholm, "Holmia"). The fortress is quite nice, on many levels, but it's been about 15 years since I saw it last.
Reply | Thread | Link

The Bellinghman
User: bellinghman
Date: 2005-06-30 19:31 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Indeed - I was aware of Holmium, but didn't mention it since its name isn't derived from that of Ytterby. (Only of the city to which it is almost attached.)
Reply | Parent | Thread | Link

Plastic Bertrand Russell
User: burkesworks
Date: 2005-06-29 17:11 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Yttrium, Ytterbium, Erbium and Terbium

Now you've earwormed me with Tom Lehrer's Elements Song.
Reply | Thread | Link

(no subject) - (Anonymous)
The Bellinghman
User: bellinghman
Date: 2005-06-30 19:33 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Oh, my.

You cruel person, you. Remind me to get some strychnine and peanuts.
Reply | Parent | Thread | Link