Is pure sulfur a Lewis base or a Lewis acid?

I am aware of the general concept behind what a Lewis base is (electron donor) and Lewis acid (electron acceptor).

This await on confuses me because I thought elemental sulfur could be either depending on the context in which it is found( I.e. What specific molecule it's found in)

I'm not sure if it is a Lewis acid or base when in elemental form.


Heat sulfur under hydrogen to form $\ce{H2S}$, and it's a Lewis base.
Heat sulfur under oxygen to form $\ce{SO2}$, and it's a Lewis acid.

In other words, its amphoteric. It can act as either a Lewis acid or base depending on its environment.

  • $\begingroup$ I don't think these are good examples. $\endgroup$ – Mithoron Jul 15 '17 at 15:09
  • $\begingroup$ @Mithoron , appreciate the input, but could you elaborate? $\endgroup$ – airhuff Jul 15 '17 at 18:23
  • $\begingroup$ These are good examples of S acting as oxidant and reluctant. Action as Lewis acid/base is debatable. $\endgroup$ – Mithoron Jul 15 '17 at 20:31

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