This paper traces the historical development of high-energy sources for emission spectroscopy from the earliest references available to us to the present. Sources included are all powered with electrical energy and include arc, spark, and plasma excitation and their many variations. No combustion flame excitation units are included, since these were dealt with in an earlier paper. The development of electrically powered sources closely followed nineteenth century progress in understanding electrical energy in general. It is evident that early-day spectroscopists were aware of progress in that field and applied that knowledge to their own problems.

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