There are more than one answer for this question. Electricity is a form of energy that occurs when the friction between two materials, an influence caused by a mechanic effect or because of the effect of heat on some crystals. It shows its results such as compression, pulling, pushing, heating, mechanical or chemical.
People have recognized electricity centuries ago when the amber rubbed with fabric and pulled light objects such as dust and hair to itself.
Thales, the Greek philosopher and scholar, did this experiment for the first time, thought that this event was only related to the amber and used ”electron” name for this process.
600 B.C. the Greeks knew that amber has the potential to attract light substances such as mushrooms and paper pieces.
In the late of 16th century, William Gilbert, a British scientist, began to study electricity seriously and took a part in history.He strudied the relationship between electricity and magnetism ,also was one of the first users of the term of ”electricity” and ”anode”, ”cathode”. For some, Gilbert isthe father of electric engineering /magnetism/electric.
In 1767,Joseph Priestly found that the opposite electric charges attract each other inversely proportional to square of distance in between.
ALESSANDRO VOLTA AND THE INVENTION OF THE BATTERY
The discovery of flowing electricity started with the studis of Italian scientist Alessandro Volta in 1800s. Besides static electric Volta succeeded in obtaining first electric battery and electric current. However, there is no significant development in the invention of electricity until 1672. In 1672, a man named Otto von Guericke, held his hand against a rapidly rotating sulfur sphere, producing more powerful electricity than before.
In 1729, Stephen Gray found that there is electrical conduction between some metarials such as metals. These are named as ”conductors”. Glass, amber,
Another huge step was the discovery of negative and positive charges by French Du Fay in 1733. Du Fay thought that negative and positive charges (electric charges) had two separate forms of electricity. Nevertheless, it was Benjamin Franklin who defined electricity as the closest thing to reality. According to Benjamin Franklin’s arguments; there was an electrical current in all the substances in nature. Friction between two specific substances result in the transmission of some part of this flow to another in such a way that the amount of excess. Today, we can tell that this flow consists of negative charged electrons.
It is unquestionable that the most important developments in electricity took place in 1800s. Battery was invented by Alessandro Volta. The invention of the battery illuminated the path of other inventions and applications, with the quality of being the first permanent and reliable source of electricity.
In 1808, Humprhy Davy was able to create an arc separating two coal electrodes carrying electric current which showed that electricity could turn into light or heat energy.
In 1820 Hans Christian Orsted observed that a magnetic needle which was near to a conductor having electrical current ,creates a magnetic field around the conductor.
NIKOLA TESLA AND ALTERNATING CURRENT(AC)
In the early of 1900s, Serbian American engineer, inventor and wizard of electricity, Nikola Tesla contributed significantly to the birth of commercial electricity. He worked with Edison and then contributed greatly in the field of electromagnetism. Alternating current, Ac engines and multiphasic electrical distribution system are the revolutionary works by him.
Later, American inventor and industrialist George Westinghouse buy alternating current engines and then developed them. Westinghouse, Tesla and others work showed that the future of electricity is in an alternating current rather than direct current. Electricity became widespread and took a crucial part in daily life in the mids of 1900’s.
Zénobe-Théopline Gramme showed that electrical energy could be efficiently transmitted through the overhead (aerial) line conductors. The establishment of the first electricity production center in 1881 was the start of the distribution and the common use of electrical energy in houses and industry.
THE USAGE OF ELECTRIC AS AN ENERGY
The usage of electric as an energy began in the 1800’s, Before this, many studies have been made to prepare the ground for this phase. B.C. Thales inventions about electrostatics, Italian physicist Volta’s battery, physicist Hans C. Orsted’s studies on electricity and magnetism, physicist Arago and Ampere’s observaitons on the magnetic field caused by electric current and Michael Farraday’s researches on dynamo that transfers mechanical energy to electric energy are among the main ones. French Hippolyte Pixli made an alternate current generator after Faraday,
In 1886, German Weiner von Siemens developed electromagnet instead of magnets in generators, allowing the use of high power generators. In the 1880’s thanks to the invention of lightbulb by Thomas Edison, electrical energy widespreadly used for lightning.