# What did Democritus believe an atom was?

Feb 21, 2016

In the 5th century, BC, Democritus of Abdera proposed that the atom was the tiniest indivisible quantity of stuff.

#### Explanation:

Our very name $\text{atom}$ derives from the Greek word, $\alpha \tau o \mu o s$, which means $\text{uncuttable}$ or $\text{indivisible}$. None of his writings survive, but he was the contemporary of Anaxagoras, Socrates, Hippocrates, and Pericles.

These days of course, we know that the atom CAN be sub-divided.