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Most Popular in Synthesis
“An Ant’s Acid Antidote” reported on some interesting chemical aspects of ants’ body fluids as self-protection (C&EN, March 3, page 44). As a fan of the humorous poetry of Ogden Nash (1902–71), I looked for his fairly well-known poem:
The ant has made himself illustrious
Through constant industry industrious.
Would you be calm, would you be placid
If you were full of formic acid?
That this ditty was penned more than 40 years ago suggests that the formic acid content of ants’ body fluids has been known for several decades. I expect that other chemists will express their thoughts that the C&EN article should have cited Nash.
James E. Sturm
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