"When Mitscherlich discovered that Glauber's salt gave a definite pressure of water
vapor, he at once formed the hypothesis, that is, supposition, that other hydrates
would be found to do likewise. Experiments showed this supposition to be correct.
The hypothesis was at once displaced by the fact. This sort of hypothesis predicts
the probable existence of certain facts or connections of facts; hence, reviving a
disused word, we call it a stochastic hypothesis (Greek στοχαστικός, apt to divine
the truth by conjecture). It differs from the other kind in that it professes to be
composed entirely of verifiable facts and is subjected to verification as quickly
Alexander Smith. Inorganic Chemistry. 1909.
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