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My textbook says that the greater oxidizing behavior of fluorine than chlorine can be attributed to the high hydration enthalpy of F ions and the low dissociation enthalpy of F-F bond.

While the second reason makes perfect sense to me, I can't reason why hydration enthalpy comes into play. I know that these elements act as oxidizing agents in aqueous media, but I still can't understand why we need to consider hydration enthalpies.

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Actually Fluorine has a high oxidizing power because its charge density is high due to its very small size, and it is also common for the hydration enthalpy that is if the charge density is high hydration enthalpy is high. So here for Fluorine there exist a greater oxidizing power and a higher hydration enthalpy because of its higher charge density.

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