The hydrate of sodium sulphate is known as Glauber’s Salt after the Dutch/German chemist and apothecary Johann Rudolf Glauber (1604-1670), who discovered it in 1625 in Austrian spring water. He named it sal mirabilis (miraculous salt), because of its medicinal properties: the crystals were used as a general purpose laxative, until more sophisticated alternatives came about in the 1900s.
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