S2A3 Biographical Database of Southern African Science




Du Toit, Prof Daniel Francois (physical chemistry)

Born: 1883, South Africa.
Died: 10 January 1944, Stellenbosch, South Africa.

Daniel Francois du Toit, chemist, was the son of Daniel Francois du Toit, one of the founders of the Genootskap van Regte Afrikaners, and his wife Margaretha Magdalena van Nierop, and a brother of the veterinarian and zoologist Petrus Johann du Toit*. He studied at Victoria College, Stellenbosch, and was awarded the Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree with honours in chemistry by the University of the Cape of Good Hope in 1904, and the Master of Arts (MA) degree in chemistry in 1907. Subsequently he went to the Netherlands to continue his studies at the University of Leiden, where he was awarded a doctoral degree in chemistry. While there he wrote a short paper entitled "Concerning combinations of urea with acids" which was published by the Koninklijke Nederlandse Akademie van Wetenschappen (1913) and what was presumably his thesis: Evenwichten in stelsels samen gesteld uit ureum, water, en een of meer zuren (Equilibriums in systems composed of urea, water, and one or more acids, 1914).

After his return to South Africa du Toit was appointed as lecturer in the Department of Chemistry at Victoria College in 1916. He was promoted to professor in April 1918, joining Prof B de St J van der Riet* and Prof C D van der Merwe*. At this time Victoria College became the University of Stellenbosch. Du Toit remained in his post until his death early in 1944. He specialised in physical chemistry and wrote a textbook on the subject for his students which was one of the earliest technical books in Afrikaans: Handleiding by die voorlesings oor fisiese gemie wat gegee word aan die Universiteit van Stellenbosch (Stellenbosch, 1920, 103 pp). A few years later he and Prof C D van der Merwe published Elementary chemistry for schools (Cape Town, 1924, 423 pp; also published in Afrikaans).


List of sources:

De Bruyn, G.F.C. Professore: Universiteit van Stellenbosch en voorgangers. Kaapstad: Nasionale Handelsdrukkery, 1989.

Google scholar. http://scholar.google.co.za/ Publications by D.F. du Toit.

Petrus Johann du Toit. Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society, 1969, Vol. 15, pp. 247-266 (see p. 247).

South African bibliography to the year 1925. London: Mansell, 1979.

Thom, H.B. et al. Stellenbosch 1866-1966: Honderd jaar hoer onderwys. Kaapstad: Nasionale Boekhandel, 1966.

University of the Cape of Good Hope. Calendar, 1906/7, 1908/9, 1917/8.


Compiled by: C. Plug


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