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The concept of resonance was introduced by Linus Pauling in 1928. He was inspired by the quantum mechanical treatment of the H2+ ion in which an electron is located between two hydrogen nuclei. The alternative term mesomerism popular in German and French publications with the same meaning was introduced by Christopher Ingold in 1938 but did not catch on in the English literature. The current concept of mesomeric effect has taken on a related but different meaning. The double headed arrow was introduced by the German chemist Arndt (also responsible for the Arndt-Eistert synthesis) who preferred the German phrase zwischenstufe or intermediate phase.
Due to confusion with the physical meaning of the word resonance, as no elements actually appear to be resonating, it is suggested to abandon the term resonance in favor of delocalization. Resonance energy would become delocalization energy and a resonance structure becomes a contributing structure. The double headed arrows would be replaced by commas.