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Cuvier’s History of the Natural Sciences

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Georges Cuvier

3. Sixteenth-century Botanists, Mineralogists, and Chemists

7. Sixteenth-century Botanists

Texte intégral

Vite vinifera Plate from Mattioli’s Commentarii in sex libros Pedaci Dioscoridis… (1565).

1Messieurs,

  • 1 [For Jonston, see Lesson 6, note 113].

2During our last session I tried to give you a presentation of how the science of zoology developed and what progress was made during the sixteenth and the first half of the seventeenth century. We saw that, as it was customary at that time, zoology started with explanatory research, critiques, and studies of the writings of the Ancients; then it focused on observation and on the study of natural productions that were geographically the closest; then it expanded with the study of natural productions specific to foreign countries. Finally, writers looked at zoology as a general science and created systems and summaries. This progress, which takes us all the way up to Jonston,1 is in a way the summary of everything that was published so far up to the seventeenth century. It was similar with botany; however, botany evolved faster than zoology because its usefulness seemed to be more direct and immediate either for agriculture or for medicine. Furthermore, botany was easier to study —since it is easier to gather live plants, nourish them, maintain them, and then, once they die, keep them in a herbarium— than to find and preserve animals. It is expensive to feed animals and they require a larger space than plants; in addition, their preservation after they die is more difficult. Thus, books on botany are more numerous and more significant than those on zoology.

  • 2 [Theodorus Gaza or Gazis (born c. 1400, Thessaloniki, Macedonia; died 1475, Calabria, Kingdom of N (...)
  • 3 He [Gaza, see note 2, above] taught Greek in Ferrara with such brilliance that when he left this t (...)
  • 4 [Aristotle and Theophrastus, see Volume 1, Lessons 7, 8, and 9.]
  • 5 [Giorgio Valla (born 1447, born Piacenza; died 1499 or 1500, Venice), an Italian humanist, writer, (...)
  • 6 [De expetendis et fugiendis rebus opus in quo continetur De Arithmetica libri III... de Musica lib (...)

3First, as we just said, there were editors of the writings of the Ancients, whose work was made easier by the earlier efforts of several Greek scholars who at the end of the fifteenth century had reached either Constantinople or provinces occupied by the Turks, before its capital was taken over. One of these scholars who was the most beneficial to the West was Theodorus Gaza,2 a Greek from Thessaloniki3 who brought with him the works of Aristotle and Theophrastus4 and made them accessible to a much larger audience by translating them, because Greek at that time was hardly ever studied. Soon after him, several physicians started to comment on the writings of the Ancients related to botany; Giorgio Valla5 was one of them. He was born in Piacenza and was a professor in Venice. He died in 1499, thus he was from the fifteenth century. He wrote an encyclopedia on fifteenth-century scholarship called De expetendis et fugiendis rebus (About things that we need to look for or stay away from).6 It includes an alphabetical list of the different medicinal plants that Greek authors had talked about. It was not printed until after his death in Venice in 1501 by his son. This book has no interest today.

  • 7 [For Pliny, see Volume 1, Lesson 13.]
  • 8 [Hermolaus Barbarus or Hermolao Barbaro (born 21 May 1453/1454, Venice; died of the plague 14 June (...)
  • 9 [Daniele Matteo Alvise Barbaro (also Barbarus) (born 8 February 1514, Venice; died 13 April 1570), (...)
  • 10 For Belon and his publications, see Lesson 3, above.]
  • 11 [The Patriarchate of Aquileia was an early center of Christianity, an historic state and catholic (...)
  • 12 [Castigationes Plinianae et Pomponii Melæ, Rome: Eucharius Silber, 1493, 1 vol. ([348] p.), in-fol (...)
  • 13 [For Pope Alexander VI, see Lesson 5, note 50.]
  • 14 [Dioscorides, see Volume 1, Lesson 12, note 62.]

4Pliny,7 second only to the Greek authors, was the one who offered the most resources to botany since part of his books was devoted to this branch of natural history. Thus, he became the object of study for botanists of that time. Hermolaus Barbarus,8 a Venetian noble, was the one who handled most of its interpretation. I have already had the opportunity to talk about the Barbaro family who produced a large number of scholars in different branches of natural history. I already told you about Daniel Barbaro,9 one of Belon’s protectors who provided him with figures of fishes for his book.10 Hermolaus was his great uncle. Like him, he was appointed by the Patriarch Pope of Aquileia.11 Because the Republic of Venice did not acknowledge his nomination, he never enjoyed his archbishopric and had to stay in Rome. He was born in 1454 and died in 1493 at the age of thirty-nine; thus, he is from the fifteenth century, which is the century that we are studying. A year before he died, in 1492, Hermolaus Barbarus published his book on Pliny; it is called Castigationes Plinianae12 and was dedicated to Pope Alexander VI.13 It is a critical study of Pliny’s manuscripts and editions that existed at that time. He tried to correct the narrative and claimed to make more than five-thousand corrections. He also made some remarks on the core content of Pliny’s work. His work helped make Pliny’s editions more accurate but they are no longer used today. Furthermore, it is printed in gothic characters, making it quite difficult to read. Barbarus also wrote a commentary on Dioscorides14 who, as I told you in the history of the ancient naturalists, was the one who contributed the most to botany.

  • 15 [Marcellus Vergilio or Vergilius (born 1464, died 1521), Greek and Latin scholar, best known for h (...)

5Marcellus Vergilio,15 who was from Florence, also produced a translation of this author in which he incorporated Barbarus’s notes. It was printed in 1518. Vergilio died not long afterwards, in 1521, right at the beginning of the sixteenth century.

  • 16 [Nicolaus Leonicenus or Niccolò Leoniceno (born 1428, Venice; died 1524, Ferrara), an Italian phys (...)
  • 17 [For Galen, see Volume 1, Lesson 16.]
  • 18 [De Plinii & plurium alioru[m] medicorum in medicina erroribus opus primu[m]...: eiusdem Nicolai E (...)
  • 19 [For Leonicenus’s book on snakes, see Lesson 3, note 8.]

6Leonicenus’s work on Pliny is also dated around the same time. All these names, Leonicenus,16 Vergilio, etc., are almost forgotten today; however, we must agree that these men contributed greatly to the science of botany. Nicolaus Leonicenus was the first translator of Galen.17 Leonicenus is not his family name; at that time, names were not only given in Latin or in Greek, but sometimes authors bore the name of their birth place or a name that stemmed from it. Thus, Leonicenus takes his name from Lonigo in the Province of Veneto where he was born in 1428. He died in 1524 at the age of ninety-six. Thus, he is already part of the sixteenth century. He was a professor in Padua and Ferrara for more than sixty years. His translation of Galen is a huge work that contributed greatly to science of his time. We also owe him a critique of Pliny called De Plinii aliorumque medicorum erroribus.18 This author is the same as the one who wrote a small book on snakes that I told you about when we studied zoology.19

7The critics who came after him were also Italian. Italy was indeed where the first research studies were undertaken for the progress of the sciences, be it in anatomy, zoology, or botany.

  • 20 [Giovanni Manardi or Manardus, also Mainardi (born 1462, Ferrara; died 1536), an Italian physician (...)
  • 21 [Mesue is Yuhanna ibn Masawaih, also written Ibn Masawaih, Masawaiyh (born 777, Gundeshapur, Persi (...)
  • 22 [Marcello Vergilio Adriani (born 1464, Florence; died 1521), professor of sciences at the universi (...)

8Giovanni Manardi or Manardus,20 one of these Italian critics, was born in Ferrara in 1462. He was physician to the kings of Hungary and died in 1536. He wrote a book called Epistolae medicinales in which he commented not only on the Ancients, but also the Arabs, in particular Mesue.21 In several instances he corrected the translation of Dioscorides that Vergilio had just done.22 He compared the works of the Arabs with those of the Ancients, with the purpose of giving more value and credential to the Ancients and of undermining the Arab authors who had been predominant during almost all of the Middle Ages, asserting that they should be abandoned in favor of the only good sources, which were the writings of the Ancients.

  • 23 [Antonio Brassavola, sometimes spelled Brasavoli or Brasavola (born 16 January 1500, Ferrara; died (...)
  • 24 [Francis I, King of France, see Lesson 1, note 39.]
  • 25 He [Francis I] gave him [Brassavola] this nickname [Musa, the Arabic name for the prophet Moses] o (...)
  • 26 [Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, see Lesson 1, note 74.]
  • 27 [Henry VIII, King of England, see Lesson 3, note 99.]
  • 28 [Pope Leon X, see Lesson 5, note 21.]
  • 29 [Cuvier says Ercolo IV, but he means to say Ercolo II, also sometimes spelled Ercole, Prince of Es (...)
  • 30 [Examen omnium simplicium medicamentorum, quorum in officinis usus est, Rome: Joannem et Franciscu (...)
  • 31 [For Plato, see Volume 1, Lesson 5.]
  • 32 [For Galileo, see Lesson 11, below.]
  • 33 [Leonicenus, see note 16, above.]

9One of his students, Antonio Brassavola,23 who was also a student of Leonicenus, worked with the same mindset and became one of the most famous botanists of his time. He was born in 1500 into a noble family of Venice. He practiced medicine and was at the service of King Francis I of France24 who nicknamed him Musa,25 which explains the name of Antonius Musa in his books. He was anointed with the Order of Saint Michael and was physician to Emperor Charles V,26 Henry VIII, king of England,27 and of Leon X.28 He was held in high esteem throughout Europe. He became physician to the Duke of Ferrara, Ercole IV,29 to whom he gave the taste of botany and with whom he went on several excursions in the mountains of Italy. He convinced him to establish a botanical garden on the peninsula formed by the River Po, where he gathered all the remarkable plants he had discovered during his excursions. Brassavola was thus the founder and owner of the first garden of its kind that had ever existed among the moderns. It was not yet a public garden, but rather the Duke of Ferrara’s private property; however, it was very beneficial to botany. Brassavola died in 1555. He wrote a book that was printed in Rome in 1536 called Examen omnium simplicium medicamentorum.30 Though Brassavola studied plants from nature, this book still looks like a critique of the Ancients. It is written in dialogs, like several other scientific books of that time. I showed you how the Platonic Academy, which was established in Florence, had been so fervent in the study of Plato;31 it was in admiration for this great writer that this kind of dialog had been adopted. It was constantly used until Galileo,32 not only by the Italian authors, but also by the German and French authors of the time we are studying. However, this format is not the most practical one for didactic works; but it was enjoyable as well as fashionable, which is already a great asset for a book. Brassavola was very useful to science with his detailed Index of the Latin translation of Galen’s work by Leonicenus.33 His Index was printed in Venice by Juntes, in five folio volumes, with a very small font. Before this Index, it was very difficult to find one’s way in this huge work. Finally, we owe Brassavola an analysis that covers almost all of Galen’s work.

10We are now done with the review of the first Italians whose research in botany was focused on the works of the Ancients, spreading their works, interpreting them, correcting the mistakes that appeared in copies, and even correcting positive errors based on the few observations they had made by themselves. We will see that similar work took place in France as well.

  • 34 [Jean Ruel or Ruelle, in Latin Ruellius (born 1474, Soissons; died 24 September 1537, Paris), Fren (...)
  • 35 He [Jean Ruel] was invited to do so by Étienne [de] Poncher, Bishop of Paris [French prelate and d (...)
  • 36 [A translation of Dioscorides’s De material medica; see Volume 1, Lesson 12, note 62.]
  • 37 [Henry Estienne, also known as Henricus Stephanus (born 1528 or 1531, Paris; died 1598, Lyon), a s (...)
  • 38 [For the Estienne family, see Lesson 1, note 56.]
  • 39 [De dissectione partium corporis humani libri tres, un cum figuris, & incisionum declarationibus, (...)

11Jean Ruel, in Latin Ruellius,34 was the first one to start working on it. He was born in Soissons in 1479; thus, from the end of the fifteenth century. He first became a physician and then got married. After he became a widower he joined an ecclesiastical order35 and became canon of Notre Dame of Paris where he died in 1539. We owe him the second Latin translation of Dioscorides.36 This work was edited in 1516 by Henry Estienne,37 a very erudite man, very well educated in science, who belonged to the Estienne family that became famous for its skill in printing and by the large number of scholars it produced.38 You remember that we already talked about one of them, Charles Estienne, who wrote a treatise on anatomy.39

  • 40 [De natura stirpium libri tres, see note 34, above.]
  • 41 [Theophrastus, Dioscorides, and Pliny; see Volume 1, Lessons 9, 12, and 13.]

12Ruel wrote a book called De natura stirpium.40 It is one of the first primary works in botany to be published in France. It appeared in 1536 and was immediately reprinted in Basel in 1537 and in Venice in 1538, which proves that he rapidly gained esteem throughout Europe. It is a compilation of Theophrastus, Dioscorides, and Pliny,41 with a few excerpts from Galen, that offers, in an abridged form, the wealth of their doctrine. It is, in a way, a summary of the research done on the Ancients, similar to the research done on the modern authors. This work includes approximately three hundred names of plants, with their common names in French. But it contains the kind of mistake that is not surprising: Ruel, who only traveled around Paris and Picardie, mixed up the plants from Greece and Italy. Described by Theophrastus, Dioscorides, and Pliny, these plants, while similar, are not exactly the same. It is a flaw we find in all authors of that time; they did not pay attention to the differences in climate and thus made mistakes that were only acknowledged much later.

13While these works were taking place in France, diligent studies in botany were also starting in Germany, but with a better approach. The study was more focused on plants from nature; as a result the books that were published in Germany during the sixteenth century were enhanced with figures that could only be done from observation of actual live specimens.

  • 42 [Otto Brunfels or Brunsfeld, also Otho or Othon Brunfels (born c. 1488, near Mainz; died 25 Novemb (...)
  • 43 [Herbarum vivae eicones ad naturae imitationem, summa cum diligentia et artificio effigiatae, una (...)
  • 44 A German edition [entitled Contrafayt Kreüterbüch nach rechter vollkommener Art: unud [sic] beschr (...)
  • 45 The paintings of this artist [Lucas Cranach the Elder; born c. 1472, Kronach, upper Franconia; die (...)
  • 46 [Albrecht] Dürer [German painter, engraver, printmaker, mathematician, and theorist; born 21 May 1 (...)

14The first botanist of this country is Otto Brunfels or Brunsfeld42 from Mainz who was a teacher in Strasburg and later became a doctor in Bern; his book called Herbarum vivae eicones43 is dated 1530 and consists of two small folio volumes.44 The plants are not in order, but this work is remarkable for being the first to include figures of an acceptable quality. They are still in wood —since it is not until the end of the seventeenth century that we begin to see copper engravings, both in botany and in zoology— but they are done after nature and several of them are very well designed, which is not surprising since Germany, as you know, had many talented artists. Its school of painting was second only to that of Italy; or to be more specific, only two schools of painting existed. Cranach45 and Albert Dürer46 were artists of the highest quality. The art of engraving thrived in Germany almost at the same time as in Italy and the number of engravers and illustrators was huge; as a consequence, naturalists never lacked the means of representing the objects they were observing.

  • 47 [Hieronymus Bock (not to be confused with Hieronymus Bosch), in Latin Tragus (born 1498, Heidesbac (...)
  • 48 [Deux-Ponts (two-bridges), the French name for Zweibrücken, a city in the state of Rhineland-Palat (...)
  • 49 [New Kreuterbuch von Underscheidt, Würckung und Namen der Kreuter, so in teutschen Landen wachsen: (...)
  • 50 [Bock’s second edition of the Kreuterbuch (see note 49, above) was published in Strasburg by Wende (...)
  • 51 His diligence made him die of phthisis [ phthisis pulmonalis or tuberculosis, also known as consum (...)
  • 52 [Aristotle, see Volume 1, Lessons 7 and 8.]
  • 53 [Theophrastus, see Volume 1, Lesson 9.]

15The second German botanist is Hieronymus Bock or Tragus,47 born in Heidesbach in 1498. He was initially a teacher in Deux-Ponts,48 then he became a Lutheran minister. He died in 1554. His book, entitled New Herbarium,49 was printed in Strasburg in 1539, without illustrations; but he added some in his second edition, borrowed from Fuchs,50 whom I will talk about later. Tragus was one of the most fervent and persistent scholars in the study of plants; he spent almost all his life traveling in the Vosges Mountains,51 which are close to his birth place. He gathered almost every plant. In his book they are divided into several sections, wild plants, fodder, trees, and bushes. There is no real method yet. Aristotle52 had provided a very specific one for animals based on their organization; but no botanist did such a work for plants. We saw that Theophrastus53 classifies them according to their use for some, and to the countries they come from for others; he does not provide anything like what botanists call nowadays a legitimate method, founded on the structure of the plants. These classifications are based only on accidental circumstances that have nothing to do with the plants themselves. We will see later that it is not until nearly the end of the sixteenth century that botany finally had a scientific method, while zoology joined sciences with the method created by Aristotle that classifies animals according to characteristics directly found in them.

  • 54 [Euricius Cordus (not to be confused with his son Valerius Cordus, also a botanist; see Lesson 3, (...)
  • 55 [Melanchthon, see note 45, above.]
  • 56 [Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus, known as Erasmus of Rotterdam or simply Erasmus (born 27 October (...)
  • 57 [For Leonicenus, see note 16, above.]
  • 58 [Botanologicon, sive colloguium de herbis, Cologne: Joannem Gymnicum, 1534, 183 + [11] p., in-8°); (...)
  • 59 [Nicandri poetae et medici antiquissimi Theriaca et Alexipharmaca; in Latinos uersus redacta, per (...)

16During the same period there lived a third German botanist named Euricius Cordus;54 it is at least the name he gives to himself in Latin since most of the names in the sixteenth century are either translated into Latin or into Greek. The German names in particular sounded too barbarian to be included in a book that was written in Latin; but these names were not always the translation of the family name of the authors or of their country with a Greek or Latin ending. Sometimes their names came from pure fantasy such as Melanchthon,55 for example, which means black soil. Euricius Cordus was more educated than the first two men I talked about; he was very well educated and well versed in Latin, which he taught in Erfurt. He corresponded with the famous Erasmus56 about it. In 1512, he went to Italy where he studied with Leonicenus.57 Then he came back to Erfurt where he gave some classes in medicine and botany. He was the one who created the first botanical garden that ever existed in Germany, but it was also a private garden. He died in Bremen in 1538. We have a book by him called Botanologicon, sive colloguium de herbis,58 printed in Cologne, in 1534, in a dialog format. This format, which was often used at that time, was entertaining but not very instructive. Euricius’s nicest work is his translation into Latin verses of two poems by Nicander called Alexi-pharmaca and Theriaca.59 This translation is still considered to be the best one today.

  • 60 [For Fuchs, see Lesson 2, note 60.]
  • 61 [George, Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach (born 4 March 1484, Ansbach; died 27 December 1543, Ansba (...)
  • 62 [Fuchs was called to Tübingen by Ulrich, Duke of Württemberg (born 8 February 1487, Riquewihr, Als (...)
  • 63 [De historia stirpium commentarii insignes, maximis impensis et vigiliis elaborati, adjectis earun (...)
  • 64 [Vesalius’s textbook of human anatomy, De humani corporis fabrica, published by Johannes Oporinus (...)
  • 65 [De historia stirpium commentarii insignes… Accessit ijs succincta vocum obscurarum in hoc opere o (...)

17But the man who is above all those I just talked about, the greatest botanist of the sixteenth century, and the first one to present plants in an acceptable manner, with figures designed well enough to enable their immediate identification, is Leonhard Fuchs,60 born in 1501 in Wemding in Bavaria. He was a professor in Ingolstadt in 1526, then physician to the Margrave of Ansbach.61 In 1528, he became professor at the University of Tübingen,62 and there, from 1531 until his death in 1566, he taught botany and anatomy. I already told you about him as a distinguished anatomist, but he deserves even more praise as a botanist. His work called De historia stirpium commentarii insignes, etc.,63 was printed in Basel in 1542, the same year the printing of the great anatomy of Vesalius began.64 Basel was at that time one of the German towns where printing was of the most exquisite quality. Basel, Venice, Paris, Florence, Antwerp, and Lyon were the towns where printing had reached near perfection. A large number of books were printed in a very refined manner in Basel during the sixteenth century. Fuchs’s book is outstanding especially for its illustrations, which amount to more than five hundred. The plates are in wood and drawn with a single line, but they are very accurate and of an acceptable size. They make up a small folio, the drawings of which almost fill the whole page, which is rare, even in the books that have been done since then. They still do not provide any detail on fructification, but the details that are represented are sufficient enough to identify the plants the author meant to illustrate. The text includes excerpts from all the Ancients, matched to the plants to which they seem to belong. It is therefore a kind of compilation; however, the author added his own description. Fuchs was a great enemy of the Arabs; he tried to discredit them as much as he could. These attacks were necessary at a time when the Arabs were leaders in all branches of medicine. He wrote several books on medicine that are very well regarded but outside the scope of our study. I had to mention him because he was the one to give the first groundwork on all the illustrations that successively came to enhance the study of botany in the works that were published after his book. A small edition of his history was published in Lyon in 1555.65 It is in duodecimo, without illustrations, but most of what made this book valuable is gone because the text is little more than a compilation, only worthy for its research in ancient synonymy, in which Fuchs is known to have excelled.

  • 66 [Valerius] Cordus [see note 54, above; and Lesson 3, note 47] had the habit of signing his name in (...)
  • 67 [For Euricius Cordus, see note 54, above.]
  • 68 [Historiae stirpium libri quatuor, posthumi, nunc primum in lucem editi, adjectis etiam stirpium i (...)
  • 69 [Conrad Gessner, see Lesson 4, above.]
  • 70 [Stirpium descriptionis liber quintus, qua in Italia sibi visas describit in praecendtibus vel omn (...)

18One of his fellow countrymen and contemporaries, who would have become a great botanist if he had not died so young, is Valerius Cordus,66 son of Euricius Cordus.67 He was born in Simshausen in Hesse, in 1515, and died in Rome, in 1544, at the age of twenty-nine. He had already written a critique of Dioscorides as his father had done before him, and he wrote a book called Historiae stirpium libri quatuor68 that he was unable to publish because of his early death. Conrad Gessner69 had it printed in 1562 in Strasburg. It includes many new and beautiful plants. Fuchs had already presented many, but Valerius Cordus had gathered a large number of plants in Italy that were still unknown to this famous botanist. The fifth part of his work, which features the plants of Italy, was published in 1563.70 A sixth part remained in manuscript.

  • 71 [Pietro Andrea Gregorio Mattioli, also known as Matthiolus (born 23 March 1501, Siena; died 1577, (...)
  • 72 [Ferdinand I, see Lesson 1, note 40.]
  • 73 [Archduke Ferdinand of Austria, Ferdinand II (born 14 June 1529, Linz; died 24 January 1595, Innsb (...)
  • 74 [For Maximilian II, see Lesson 6, note 75.]

19After these authors, who wrote the first essays in the sixteenth century on the history of plants, came a man who became more famous than them and whose books were much more numerous, although he was far from being as worthy as the prior authors we talked about. This man is Pietro Andrea Mattioli, known as Matthiolus.71 He was born in Sienna in 1500, right at the beginning of the century we are studying. He received his medical degree in Padua where the most famous school of medicine in Europe of that time was located. Only the school of medicine in Montpellier could compete. Matthiolus practiced the profession of physician in Sienna and in Rome, but with little success. He ended up settling down in the Valley of Anania near Trent in 1527 and remained there until 1540. Then he went to Gorica, an Austrian town in Italy, and to Prague in 1552 where he had been called by Ferdinand I72 to become physician to his son, Archduke Ferdinand.73 Then he became first physician to Maximilian II,74 until he retired in Trent where he died of the plague in 1577.

  • 75 [See note 71, above; and Volume 1, Lesson 12, note 62.]
  • 76 [Ogier Ghiselin de Busbecq (born 1522, Comines; died 28 October 1592), Flemish writer, herbalist, (...)
  • 77 It is impossible to study this period of time without encountering illegitimate children in great (...)
  • 78 One of these plants was the lilac, one of the prettiest acquisitions in botany from the Orient [M. (...)
  • 79 [Giacomo Antonio Cortusi, also spelled Cortuso or Cartusi (born 1513, Padua; died 21 June 1603), I (...)
  • 80 [Luca Ghini (born 1490, Casalfiumanese; died 4 May 1556, Bologna), an Italian physician and botani (...)
  • 81 He [Mattioli] chose this language [Italian; see note 71, above] because most of the pharmacists or (...)
  • 82 [Commentarii in sex libros Pedaci Dioscoridis Anazerbei de medica materia iam denuo ab ipso autore (...)
  • 83 [Vincenzo Valgrisi (fl. 1540-1572), a distinguished printer of illustrated books, issuing many edi (...)
  • 84 [Pope Pius IV, see Lesson 3, note 61.]
  • 85 [Ferdinand I, see Lesson 1, note 40.]
  • 86 [Charles IX, see Lesson 2, note 41.]
  • 87 [Cosimo de’Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany (not to be confused with Cosimo de’ Medici, founder of th (...)

20His book was published in 1544; it is an Italian translation of Dioscorides75 done with new resources that were not available to his predecessors. Contacts were already established with Turkey at that time; the King of France and the Emperor of Germany sent ambassadors to these countries. One of them named Ogier Ghiselin de Busbecq,76 illegitimate son of Lord de Busbecq,77 was very well educated. During his stay in Turkey, which lasted quite a long time, he sent to Matthiolus a large number of plants from Greece and Asia Minor78 that he had gathered himself as he was quite well versed in botany. For each plant he wrote the country where he had found it. This information was very useful to Matthiolus for his work on Dioscorides with regard to nomenclature. Furthermore, he was in contact with all the botanists from Italy, those who owned those beautiful gardens that received foreign plants from everywhere. He was in contact in particular with Cortusi79 and Luca Ghini.80 His comments were first published in Italian,81 but he also published more than thirty editions in Latin. One of his great contributions was that he provided excellent illustrations; however, we must acknowledge that he benefited from the Italian and German painters and engravers, thus having more means than any other authors to enhance his work. The best edition, which is a masterpiece, was published in Venice in 1565.82 It is the edition by Valgrisi,83 approved by Pius IV,84 Ferdinand I,85 Charles IX,86 and Cosimo de’Medici.87 It includes about one thousand illustrations. Although engraved in wood, the drawing brought corrections and refinement to the illustrations. They are no longer single-line drawings like the ones published by Fuchs, but perfectly shaded, and aside from the botanical details that did not exist at that time, it is difficult to imagine any better rendition based on wood engravings. Basically these illustrations are very elegant and relatively perfect. Thus, this edition is still valuable today, although we do have nowadays books of a higher quality in all regards. Botanical details, for example, are missing, as I said earlier, because nobody thought about it at that time. Plants were observed as a group; even flowers were not studied as they are today. Scholars did not think about counting the number of stamens or observing the inside of the capsules, let alone the seeds; but again, the plants, as a whole are very well represented.

  • 88 [Rembert Dodoens (born 29 June 1517, Mechelen; died 10 March 1585, Leiden), Flemish physician and (...)
  • 89 [Walloon region, known as Wallonia, the predominantly French-speaking southern region of Belgium.]
  • 90 [See note 88, above.]
  • 91 [For Belon, see Lesson 3.]
  • 92 [Rauwolf, see Lesson 5, note 4.]
  • 93 [Prosper Alpinus, see Lesson 4, note 55.]
  • 94 [Melchior Guilandinus, also known as Melchior Wieland (born 1520; died 25 December 1589, Padua), G (...)
  • 95 These barbarians took away the plants he [Guilandinus] had gathered and the notes he had written. (...)
  • 96 [Falloppio, see Lesson 2.]
  • 97 [Vesalius, see Lesson 1.]
  • 98 [Luigi Anguillara (born c. 1512; died 1570), first director of the botanical garden in Padua and h (...)
  • 99 [Bernard Trevisan, a reference to one or more Italian alchemists, described as living from 1406 to (...)
  • 100 [Papyrus, hoc est commentarius in tria Caii Plinii majoris de papyro capita: accessit Hieronymi Me (...)

21One of Matthiolus’s contemporaries, who followed approximately the same methodology that Matthiolus used, did not only produce a commentary of Dioscorides; he wrote a book with a very original approach. This botanist is called Rembert Dodoens.88 He was born in the Walloon region89 in 1517 and settled in Antwerp. He then became a professor in Leiden where he died in 1585. In several instances, he published sections of books that included many illustrations engraved on wood. Since he had them printed in Antwerp where Clusius’s illustrations were also printed, some of their respective illustrations appeared in each other’s books. Dodoens’s book is called Stirpium historiae pemptades sex, sive libri XXX.90 It is a single folio volume, printed in Antwerp in 1563. The author presents more than thirteen hundred plants, but the illustrations are far from being as beautiful as those published by Matthiolus; they are also neither as large nor as well designed as the ones by Fuchs. In spite of these two negative aspects, this book introduces some novelty; indeed, between the time of prior publications and his book, travels to faraway countries brought new knowledge of botany and zoology. We already talked about the travels to the Levant by Belon,91 Rauwolf,92 and Prosper Alpinus.93 We can add Melchior Guilandinus94 to the list; he was born in Prussia and visited Egypt and Syria, but on his way back he was held captive by Algerian pirates95 who held him in harsh slavery until the famous Falloppio,96 whom we talked about after Vesalius,97 freed him by paying his ransom. Deeply indebted, he went to Padua to be with his liberator who added even more to his deeds by naming him, in 1561, director of the botanical garden instead of Anguillara.98 He did such a great job that when Falloppio died he was entrusted with his chair in botany, after it had been held for a very short time by Bernard Trevisan.99 He wrote a very famous treatise on papyrus. It contains for the first time the description of how this paper, used by the Ancients, was made, and the history of the plant that produces its raw material. This book was published in Venice in 1572; it is called Papyrus, hoc est commentarius in tria Caii Plinii majoris de papyro capita.100

  • 101 [Garcias ab Horto, Garcia of the Garden, is Garcia de Orta (born 1501 or 1502, Castelo de Vide, Ki (...)
  • 102 [Bombay, present-day Mumbai, is built on what was once an archipelago of seven islands: Bombay, Pa (...)
  • 103 [Dialogues or conversations on the medicine and drugs of India; see note 101, above.]
  • 104 [Clusius (Carolus), Exoticorum libri decem, quibus animalium, plantarum, aromatum, aliorumque pere (...)
  • 105 [Asafoetida or asafetida, the dried latex exuded from the living underground rhizome or tap root o (...)
  • 106 [Benzoin, a balsamic resin obtained from the bark of several species of trees of the genus Styrax,(...)

22Human curiosity fortunately has no limit, and further explorations to faraway countries beyond those that had already been explored were anticipated. Thus, as soon as the Portuguese were established in India, their physicians started researching local plants. Since medicinal plants and spices from India had already been used for several centuries, initial studies naturally focused on these plants and spices, or at least on the vegetal products from which they were made. Garcias ab Horto or Garcia of the Garden,101 born in 1500 and professor in Lisbon, was the one who initiated these studies. He went to India with the vice-king as physician to the Portuguese settlements. On the island where Bombay is currently located,102 the capital of the English settlements that belonged at that time to the Portuguese, he created a botanical garden in which he gathered all the plants from India that were useful to medicine. He wrote a book on them that was printed in Goa in 1563 called Dialogues103 on the medicine and drugs of India. Clusius included a Latin translation of this book in his Exotica in a different format.104 Since then, it has been printed many times. This book enabled physicians to learn about the plants that provide the medicines they had been using for a very long time without knowing where they came from. It contains the description of aloe, asafoetida,105 benzoin,106 lacquer, camphor, betel, mace, cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg, basically a wealth of precious substances that until now had not been studied at their source.

  • 107 [Cristóvão da Costa or Cristóbal Acosta, also known as Christoval Acosta Africano (born 1515, perh (...)
  • 108 [Tractado de las drogas y medicinas de las Indias orientales con sus plantas debuxadas al biuo por (...)
  • 109 [Mimosa pudica (sensitive plant, sleepy plant, and the touchme-not), a creeping annual or perennia (...)
  • 110 We know that Monsieur [René Joachim Henri] Dutrochet his studies of osmosis; born 14 November 1776 (...)

23One of Garcia’s students named Cristóvão da Costa,107 a Spanish surgeon from Burgos, later published a book on the same topic called Treatise on drugs and medicine from the East Indies and their plants.108 He introduced the sensitive plant called Mimosa pudica109 whose leaves fall inward when touched.110

  • 111 [Nicolás Bautista Monardes (born 1493; died 10 October 1588) was a Spanish physician and botanist, (...)
  • 112 [Copal, an amber-like tree resin usually identified with aromatic resins used by the cultures of p (...)
  • 113 [Ricin, a highly toxic, naturally occurring carbohydrate-binding protein, produced in the seeds of (...)
  • 114 [Tolu balsam or balsam of Tolu, the resinous secretion of a South American tree, Myroxylon balsamu (...)
  • 115 [Balsam, a term used for various pleasantly scented plant pro or gummy oleoresins, usually contain (...)
  • 116 There is no better proof of the weirdness of humanities than the history of tobacco. A plant compl (...)
  • 117 [Gaiac or Guaiacum, a slow-growing shrub-like tree of the New World tropics, Guaiacum sanctum, fro (...)
  • 118 [Smilax aspera, a species of perennial evergreen vine or shrub in the greenbriar family, Smilacace (...)
  • 119 [Clusius, see Lesson 6, note 73.]
  • 120 [Maximilian II, see Lesson 6, note 75.]
  • 121 [Rudolph II, see Lesson 6, note 76.]
  • 122 [The collected works of Carolus Clusius (see Lesson 6, note 73), published in two parts: Rariorum (...)

24Another Spaniard called Nicolas Monardes,111 a physician in Seville, studied medicinal plants from America. In his book, he talks about copal,112 ricin,113 tolu,114 balsam,115 and tobacco, relating the history of the latter for the first time.116 He also relates how Indian jugglers used this plant, and through inhaling its smoke were able to reach some kind of inebriation before they would make predictions and perform other quack acts. He also talks about tobacco as something very much used in Europe. It was used indeed for fumigations as well as to smoke, but I do not think it was used yet in powdered form. Several other plants that are common today, such as gaiac117 and Smilax aspera,118 are also mentioned by Monardes, but the Ancients did not know about the ordinary bean that he mentions as a new vegetable. Finally, he talks about a few medicinal drugs extracted from animals, but I did not see that he talked about the potato. We will see that this tuber plant, which is the nicest gift from America to Europe, was not introduced until the end of the sixteenth century. We hear about it for the first time from Clusius.119 Clusius, as you know, was born in 1526 and died in 1609. I told you how educated this man was when we studied zoology; he is even more outstanding as a botanist. He traveled a lot in France, Italy, and Germany and ended up as director of the botanical garden of Vienna under Emperors Maximilian II120 and Rudolph II.121 Then he traveled to Hungary; thus, he had every opportunity to learn about plants from Europe, even foreign plants that had already been introduced. First, he published several small books: one on rare plants from Spain; another on those from Hungary and Austria; then he published a more general book that included all his prior work; it is called Rariorum plantarum historia and was printed in Antwerp by Plantin in 1601.122 It belongs to the seventeenth century by its date, but in reality it is a production of the sixteenth century since it is only a compilation of the works that Clusius had published in 1576.

  • 123 [Walter Raleigh, see Lesson 5, note 66.]
  • 124 [Francisco López de Gómara, see Lesson 6, note 108.]
  • 125 We can see what Monsieur [Jean-Jacques] Virey [French pharmacist and naturalist; born 1775, died 1 (...)

25This work made Clusius one of the greatest botanists of his century. He was actually a very erudite man; he knew languages well and he had a perfect knowledge of authors. His style is very clear and elegant, and he is the one who gives the best descriptions on both aspects. His illustrations are in wood and the engraving is mediocre; however, they are sufficient to enable identification of the species. I cannot go into detail of those that have not yet been published; they are too numerous since there are more than six hundred. I will only mention the potato because it is erroneously believed that this plant comes from Virginia and that it was imported in Europe by the famous and unfortunate Walter Raleigh,123 the English admiral I told you about in my previous lesson. This belief is not correct. We can see in Clusius’s book that in 1586 the potato could already be found all over Italy and was so common that not only was it a staple food, but it was also used to feed animals. Such a large availability shows that it had probably been cultivated for several years; since Raleigh came back from his expedition in 1585, one year before the potato was profusely used in Italy, it is obvious that the potato was not imported to Europe by this admiral. Clusius gives us another proof that the potato does not come from Virginia. One of his books features an article with a very clear description of it and Gómara124 also mentions it as a staple food for people from Quito, and the neighboring areas of the mountains from southern Peru, who called it papas. All of its properties are so well defined that it is impossible to doubt its Peruvian origin and that its introduction in Europe is owed to the Spanish who brought it first to Italy. Thus, it is important to rectify this wrong belief about the origin of the potato and its introduction in Europe.125

  • 126 [Este family, see note 29, above.]
  • 127 [Conrad Gessner, see Lesson 4.]

26It is not surprising that Clusius includes the documentation we just mentioned; this famous botanist not only gathered plants from Europe, he also gathered several writings on plants from more distant countries. He even created a botanical garden; we can see that it had become necessary to study plants from nature. The same applied as well for animals, but their study was more difficult, and the usefulness of that study did not seem so obvious either. Small zoos and collections of remains of animals were thus created, but not as promptly as botanical gardens. The first gardens of this kind belonged to private people, princes, or professors. The Este family owned one near Ferrara;126 there was another one near Leipzig. Conrad Gessner,127 who I talked about earlier as a scholar in zoology, owned a botanical garden in Zurich. The Belgians and Dutch especially were at that time particularly focused on the culture of beautiful flowers; as soon as beautiful ones were introduced from foreign countries they immediately added them to their gardens and bred them.

27Fashion, which in the sixteenth century consisted mainly in wearing very beautiful embroideries, was on the lookout for new flowers. The numerous embroiders of that time resorted to all kinds of ways to obtain new patterns and they had thus created an impetus for the establishment of gardens exclusively aimed at meeting their needs.

  • 128 [Jean Robin (born 1550, died 1629), French horticulturist, gardener-in-chief during the reign of k (...)
  • 129 A specific pattern got him [Robin] very excited; the queen [Marie de’Medici; born 26 April 1575, F (...)
  • 130 [Robinia acacia, correctly Robinia pseudoacacia, commonly known as the black locust, a tree of the (...)
  • 131 [Grand Duke Cosimo I, see Lesson 3, note 100.]
  • 132 [Luca Ghini, see note 80, above.]
  • 133 [Andre Césalpin, see Lesson 2, note 47.]
  • 134 [Anguillara, see note 98, above.]
  • 135 [Guilandinus, see notes 94 and 95, above.]
  • 136 [Giacomo Antonio Cortusi (born 1513, Padua; died 21 June 1603), professor of botany at Padua, who (...)
  • 137 As Monsieur Cuvier already mentioned, almost all the names of that time are altered. The real name (...)
  • 138 [Aldrovandi, see Lesson 4, notes 31 and 32.]
  • 139 [Michael Mercatus or Michele Mercati (born 1541, died 1593), Italian physician and naturalist who (...)

28The most remarkable of these gardens was the one that belonged to Jean Robin128 who lived under Henry IV.129 Robinia acacia130 is named after him because he was the first one to introduce this plant into Europe, or at least to breed it. But all these gardens were not useful to science; science required public institutions where students could be introduced by their professors and allowed to study. The first institution of this kind was established in 1543 under the orders of Grand Duke Cosimo I.131 The direction of this establishment was first entrusted to Luca Ghini,132 a very erudite botanist, and then to Césalpin,133 the creator of the first system in botany. The second public garden was established in Padua in 1545 on the orders of the Republic of Venice, which at that time was a very fervent protector of this university as I already mentioned when we studied anatomy. Its first director was Anguillara.134 Guilandinus,135 the man from Prussia I just told you about, succeeded him and held that position for quite a long time. Finally, the third director was Cortusus.136 The next botanical garden was in Florence, created in 1556. Luca Ghini founded it after he founded the one in Pisa; he was succeeded by Benincasa.137 The fourth garden in chronological order was at the University of Bologna. This university did not want to leave this kind of ornamental gardens only to the universities of Padua and Pisa; thus, in 1568, it created its own botanical garden. Its first director was the famous Aldrovandi138 who we know already from the analysis I made of his research in zoology. Rome had the fifth botanical garden, within the Vatican; it was founded as well in 1568. Since these two cities are located within the state of the church, it is possible that their gardens were established on the orders of the same Pope, under the influence of Aldrovandi. Whether this is the case or not, Mercatus139 was the first director of the garden of the Vatican.

  • 140 [King Philip II of Spain, see Lesson 2, note 1; and Lesson 5, note 29.]
  • 141 [Jacob van der Does (born c. 1500, died 1577), schepen (alderman) of Leiden during the siege of th (...)
  • 142 [Dirck Outgaertszoon Cluyt, in Latin Clutius (born 1546; died 1598, Leiden), Dutch pharmacist and (...)
  • 143 They were, however, related and very good friends [see note 142, above]. Cluyt dedicated to Clusiu (...)
  • 144 Before that, students had to go to Italy to learn botany [M. de St.-Agy].
  • 145 [Pierre Richer de Belleval (born 1564, Châlons-en-Champagne; died 17 November 1632, Montpellier), (...)
  • 146 [Louis XIII, see Lesson 2, note 110.]
  • 147 [Ludwig Jungermann (born 4 July 1572, Leipzig; died 7 June 1653), German physician and botanist wh (...)
  • 148 [Johann Konrad von Gemmingen (born 23 October 1561, Tiefenbronn; died 7 November 1612, Eichstätt), (...)
  • 149 [Basilius Besler (born 1561, Nuremberg; died 13 March 1629, Nuremberg), a German apothecary and bo (...)
  • 150 [Besler was assisted by his brother Jerome Besler (see Lesson 8, note 45, below) and Ludwig Junger (...)

29In 1568, Europe did not have any other garden than the ones I just listed. Leiden was the first town in the north to follow the example of Italy. Its university had been founded two years before by the new republic of the Netherlands, in the name of Philip II;140 while insurrection was already blatant against this king, he had not yet been removed from power. The establishment of this university was to acknowledge the courage of the town of Leiden during the siege it held against Philip II. The town of Leiden had to face and manage the most terrible famine of all time under the orders of Van der Does141 who later became one of the first curators of this university. His botanical garden was established in 1577; its first director was Cluyt, in Latin Clutius,142 who we should not mistake for Clusius.143 A little bit later, in 1580, the garden of Leipzig was created. It was not until 1597 that France got a botanical garden. It was established at the University of Montpellier on the orders of Henry IV.144 Its first director was Richer de Beleval145 who was at that time professor of botany, and who personally contributed financially to maintain it. But after the death of Henry IV, while Louis XIII146 was still a minor, he lost the resources he had been granted and the garden of Montpellier was reduced to almost nothing; to such a point actually that when it was suggested to open a garden in Paris in 1626, it was based on the grounds that the one at Montpellier had been destroyed. Several gardens were established in Germany, in Giessen, in the Hesse region under Jungermann,147 and in Aichstaedt, by the archbishop of that time, Konrad von Gemmingen,148 who was a protector of the sciences, to be credited for the first luxury edition on botany. The town of Nuremberg, which was at that time a Republic and had founded the University of Alfort, created a botanical garden in 1625. These three gardens were established by the same director, Basilius Besler,149 an apothecary. Since he did not know Latin, he had to hire the services of a writer to prepare his book,150 which is a magnificent work.

  • 151 [Guy de la Brosse (born 1586; died 1641, Paris), a French botanist, pharmacist, and physician to K (...)
  • 152 According to Monsieur [François] Chaussier [French anatomist; born 2 July 1746, Dijon; died 19 Jun (...)
  • 153 [Cardinal Richelieu is Armand Jean du Plessis, Cardinal-Duc de Richelieu et de Fronsac (born 9 Sep (...)
  • 154 [Jean Robin, see notes 128 and 129, above.]
  • 155 This garden covered only the small triangle that is now known as Place Dauphine [a public square l (...)
  • 156 This is still what Monsieur [Adrien-Henri] de Jussieu 1853, Paris), son of the more famous Antoine (...)

30In 1626, it was ordered again to create a botanical garden in Paris. The project was presented by a physician of Louis XIII nicknamed Guy de la Brosse151 who spurred the interest of the first doctor of this prince called Herouard.152 Herouard was the one who obtained from the king an edict that ordered the establishment of a botanical garden in one of the neighborhoods of Paris, but more than eight years went by between the order and the execution of that order. During these eight years, Guy de la Brosse was very active in securing all that was needed for this garden; he wrote several times to the king, the Cardinal Richelieu,153 the superintendent, and the chancellor. He asked a Paris neighborhood for fifty acres of land and 200,000 francs; he did not receive even half of what he had asked for. This is how today’s Museum of Natural History came to be. Guy de la Brosse started giving classes there in 1634. Prior to that, the only botanical garden in Paris was the one that belonged to Jean Robin,154 which contained merely two hundred plants.155 That is all the University had available to teach botany. Thus, the university had to make up for it with field trips in the countryside where plants were shown to students in situ.156

31A botanical garden had also been set up in Jena in 1629. Messina also owned a similar garden in 1638. England came later and Oxford’s garden was not created until 1640. Copenhagen also had one that same year and Groningen the year after. The University of Groningen was founded only after the insurrection of the provinces of the Netherlands, like the one in Leiden, and it belonged only to the province of Groningen, as the one of Leiden belonged to the provinces of Holland and Zeeland.

  • 157 [For Linnaeus, see Lesson 2, note 112.]

32The garden of Uppsala, which became so famous and was one of the main hubs of progress in botany during Linnaeus’s157 time was founded in 1657; the garden in Amsterdam, which gathered probably the largest number of foreign plants, was founded in 1684. Several others were founded during the eighteenth century. As of today, we have as many gardens as science requires since every school, no matter how small, has its own.

  • 158 [Conrad Gessner, see Lesson 4, above.]
  • 159 [Gaspard Wolf (died 1601,) pupil, friend, and successor of Gessner in the chair of physics at Zuri (...)
  • 160 [Joachim Camerarius the Younger (born 6 November 1534, Nuremberg; died 11 October 1598, Nuremberg) (...)
  • 161 [The Barbaros, a wealthy and influential patrician family of Venice that owned large estates in th (...)
  • 162 [The Bernouillis, a patrician family of merchants and scholars, 167. originally from Antwerp, that (...)
  • 163 [Joachim Camerarius the Younger, see note 160, above.]
  • 164 [A very popular version of Mattioli’s commentaries on Dioscorides (see notes 71 and 82, above; for (...)
  • 165 [Albrecht von Haller, see Lesson 1, note 16.]
  • 166 [Mattioli’s translation of the Materia medica of Dioscorides; see notes 71, 82, and 164, above.]
  • 167 [Opera botanica, per duo saecula desiderata, vitam auctoris et operis historiam Cordi librum quint (...)

33The last ones to have botanical gardens were the Spanish and the Portuguese, although they could have created them before anybody else, since they were the ones to make the first discoveries. The garden of Madrid was not established until 1753, and the one of Coimbra, which is the main botanical garden of Portugal, in 1773. Thus, it is only recently that botanical gardens have been used as an instructional resource in both countries. Before all these gardens were established, we only had comments from the writings of the Ancients, and illustrations and descriptions of indigenous and exotic plants. But these descriptions were done without any methodology, with only vague elements, and without a terminology that would have resulted from the specific study of the organs of fructification—there was neither classification nor a system per se. Thanks to the resources that botanical gardens provided during the second half of the sixteenth century, science started to progress. The first problem to solve was to know which part of the plant to examine for its characteristics of classification to establish the basis of methodology. Conrad Gessner158 was the one to discover it. I already told you about the life of this famous man, with enough details, and I won’t go back to it. I told you about his erudition, the trips he undertook, and the numerous correspondences he maintained to increase his knowledge in all the natural sciences. Indeed, you will see him again in the study of minerals. I showed you how he was the greatest zoologist of his century. He was also the greatest botanist. He traveled through Switzerland, Piedmont, Alsace, Lombardy, and southern France, with the purpose of gathering plants. He managed to identify more than eight hundred new species. In several small books, he focused primarily on proving that plants should not be classified according to all their parts without any distinction, but that their generic characters are to be found in the organs of fructification, which are the fruit and the flower. Thus, the characters of superiority are also to be found there as well, since it is obvious that the more important a plant part is, the more it belongs to a higher level of classification, to a more general division. He also showed that all plants with similar flowers and fruits are also similar in their other shapes, and also their properties, and that when we put these plants together we obtain a natural classification. This principle has been the basis of methodological botany. If Gessner had had time to finish his work, he would have probably become a classic author in botany, as he was in zoology. His plan was to publish a history of plants that would have been a sequel to his history of animals. It would have contained fifteen hundred illustrations and excerpts from one hundred and sixty authors. This book existed as a manuscript when he died. It was entrusted to his student Gaspard Wolf159 who was supposed to publish it, but since he did not have the time to do it, he sold it to a doctor from Nuremberg named Joachim Camerarius.160 The Camerarius family was one of the most erudite families of this town, like the Barbaro family161 in Venice and later the Bernouilli family162 in Basel, and several other families in various countries. The first of the Camerarius was born in Bamberg in 1500; he was almost a universal scholar. He was one of those who organized the most schools in Germany and spread the taste for ancient Roman literature the most. Joachim Camerarius163 was a physician and a great botanist. He directed the botanical garden of Altorf that was established by the Republic of Nuremberg. He used the plates that Gessner had engraved for an abbreviated version of Matthiolus that he published in 1586.164 Although engraved on wood, these plates are designed with such elegance and accuracy that Haller,165 who was an expert, not only in terms of science but also in other areas, said that because of these illustrations only Matthiolus’s book,166 which does not have much merit other than for its illustrations, was a book that allowed us to learn about botany, thus about a large number of plants, in the most pleasurable way. In addition to the talent with which these plates were designed, they also offer the advantage of presenting the flower and the fruit carefully engraved next to each plant. Gessner focused particularly on these parts; he put a lot of emphasis on them since he founded scientific botany based on these characteristics. Gessner’s writings went through several outside editors and its publication, which ended up being very incomplete, did not occur until two hundred years after his death under the title of Gessneri opera botanica.167 By then, botany had progressed so much that Gessner no longer offered any interest for the history of science. But it is a good thing to know about this book today and appreciate how far Gessner had gone in his botanical discoveries.

34I will stop here for today, with this step forward in the history of science and following how it progressed, not as fast as we could have wished, but in a steady manner as we will see it in our next lesson.

Notes

1 [For Jonston, see Lesson 6, note 113].

2 [Theodorus Gaza or Gazis (born c. 1400, Thessaloniki, Macedonia; died 1475, Calabria, Kingdom of Naples), also called by the epithet Thessalonicensis (in Latin) and Thessalonikeus (in Greek), a Greek humanist and translator of Aristotle, an important leader of the revival of learning in the fifteenth century.]

3 He [Gaza, see note 2, above] taught Greek in Ferrara with such brilliance that when he left this town to go to Rome where Pope Nicolas V [head of the Catholic Church from 6 March 1447 until his death; born 15 November 1397, died 24 March 1455)] had invited him to come, it became a custom among scholars to take their hat off when they would pass by his former house; this custom remained for a long time even after his death [M.de St.-Agy].

4 [Aristotle and Theophrastus, see Volume 1, Lessons 7, 8, and 9.]

5 [Giorgio Valla (born 1447, born Piacenza; died 1499 or 1500, Venice), an Italian humanist, writer, and mathematician, best known for his encyclopedia (see note 6, below.]

6 [De expetendis et fugiendis rebus opus in quo continetur De Arithmetica libri III... de Musica libri V... de Geometrica libri VI..., Venetiis: Aldo Manutius, 1501, 2 vols, in-folio; an encyclopedia covering a wide range of topics, including, among other things, mathematics, music, astrology, physiology, medicine, grammar, dialectics, poetry, rhetoric, moral philosophy, and even home economics.]

7 [For Pliny, see Volume 1, Lesson 13.]

8 [Hermolaus Barbarus or Hermolao Barbaro (born 21 May 1453/1454, Venice; died of the plague 14 June 1493, Rome), an Italian Renaissance scholar, considered, even during his lifetime, a leading authority on the Greek and Latin works of antiquity.]

9 [Daniele Matteo Alvise Barbaro (also Barbarus) (born 8 February 1514, Venice; died 13 April 1570), an Italian translator and commentator on Marcus Vitruvius (see Lesson 3, note 50), best known generally for his vast output in the arts, letters, and mathematics; he also had a significant ecclesiastical career, reaching the rank of cardinal.]

10 For Belon and his publications, see Lesson 3, above.]

11 [The Patriarchate of Aquileia was an early center of Christianity, an historic state and catholic episcopal see, and today a catholic titular see in northeastern Italy, centered on the ancient city of Aquileia situated at the head of the Adriatic, on what is now the Italian coast, at the confluence of the Anse and the Torre. For many centuries it played an important part in history, and a number of church councils were held there.]

12 [Castigationes Plinianae et Pomponii Melæ, Rome: Eucharius Silber, 1493, 1 vol. ([348] p.), in-folio; Hermolaus Barbarus’s most influential work (see note 8, above).]

13 [For Pope Alexander VI, see Lesson 5, note 50.]

14 [Dioscorides, see Volume 1, Lesson 12, note 62.]

15 [Marcellus Vergilio or Vergilius (born 1464, died 1521), Greek and Latin scholar, best known for his Latin translation, with extensive commentary, of Dioscorides: Pedacii Dioscoridae Anazarbei De medica materia libri sex. Interprete Marcello Uirgilio Secretario Flore[n] tino: Cu[m] eiusde[m] annotationibus: nuperq[uam] dilige[n] tissime excusi: Addito indice eoru[m] q [ue] digna notatu visa sunt, Florence: haeredes Philippi luntae, 1518, [6] + 352 leaves +[12] p., in-folio.]

16 [Nicolaus Leonicenus or Niccolò Leoniceno (born 1428, Venice; died 1524, Ferrara), an Italian physician and humanist, pioneer in the translation of ancient Greek and Arabic medical texts by such authors as Galen and Hippocrates into Latin; he also wrote the first scientific paper on syphilis. His translation of Galen is titled Nicolai Leoniceni in libros Galeni e Graeca in Latinum linguam a se translatos praefatio communis. Ejusdem in artem medicinalem Galeni... praefatio... Galeni ars medicinalis, quae et ars parva dicitur, Nicolo Leo. i [n] terp[re] te, in qua multa depravata, multaq. penitus omissa librarioru[m] vitio, ab eodem refrituuntur. Ejusdem ad Franciscum Castellum illu. Ferrarie Ducis prestantissimu[m] medicum in opus de tribus doctrinis ordinatis secundum Galeni sententia, prefatio. Ejusdem de tribus doctrinis ordinatis secundum Galeni sententiam opus. Galeni In Aphorismos Hippocratis, cum ipsis Aphorismis, eodem Nicolao Leoniceno interprete, first published in 1509, [Ferrara]: [Joannem Macciochium Bondenum], XXX-VIII + [8] + LXXVIII p., in-folio.]

17 [For Galen, see Volume 1, Lesson 16.]

18 [De Plinii & plurium alioru[m] medicorum in medicina erroribus opus primu[m]...: eiusdem Nicolai Epistola ad Hermolaum Barbarum in primi operis defensionem: eiusde[m] Nicolai De Plinii & plurium aliorum medicorum erroribus novum opus...: eiusdem Nicolai Ad Hieronymum Menocchium epistola: in qua eade[m] materia de multis simplicibus medicame[n] tis pertractatur & quaedam Plinii atq[ue] aliorum medicorum errata continentur, [Ferrara]: [Giovanni Mazzochi], 1509, [4] + 95 + [3] p., in-4°.]

19 [For Leonicenus’s book on snakes, see Lesson 3, note 8.]

20 [Giovanni Manardi or Manardus, also Mainardi (born 1462, Ferrara; died 1536), an Italian physician, astrologer, and professor, author of Epistolarum medicinalium libri XX, eiusdem in Ioan Mesue Simplicia et composita annotations, Strasbourg: Joannem Schottum, 1529, [20] + 469 + [2] p., in-folio.]

21 [Mesue is Yuhanna ibn Masawaih, also written Ibn Masawaih, Masawaiyh (born 777, Gundeshapur, Persia; died 857, Samarra), a Syriac physician who became director of a hospital in Baghdad; he composed medical treatises on a number of topics, including ophthalmology, fevers, headache, melancholia, dietetics, the testing of physicians, and medical aphorisms.]

22 [Marcello Vergilio Adriani (born 1464, Florence; died 1521), professor of sciences at the university of Florence, he was called the Florentine Dioscorides because of his beautiful translation and commentary on Dioscorides (see Volume 1, Lesson 12, note 62), printed at Florence, first in 1518 and again in 1523 and 1538, under the title Pedacii Dioscoridae Anazarbei de medica materia libri sex (see note 15, above).]

23 [Antonio Brassavola, sometimes spelled Brasavoli or Brasavola (born 16 January 1500, Ferrara; died 1555, Ferrara), Italian physician, philosopher, and botanist, said to have performed the first successful tracheotomy.]

24 [Francis I, King of France, see Lesson 1, note 39.]

25 He [Francis I] gave him [Brassavola] this nickname [Musa, the Arabic name for the prophet Moses] on the occasion of his delivering a thesis in Paris called De omni scibili [of all things that can be known] [M. de St.-Agy].

26 [Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, see Lesson 1, note 74.]

27 [Henry VIII, King of England, see Lesson 3, note 99.]

28 [Pope Leon X, see Lesson 5, note 21.]

29 [Cuvier says Ercolo IV, but he means to say Ercolo II, also sometimes spelled Ercole, Prince of Este (born 5 April 1508, Ferrara; died 3 October 1559, Ferrara), Duke of Ferrara, Modena, and Reggio from 1534 to 1559.]

30 [Examen omnium simplicium medicamentorum, quorum in officinis usus est, Rome: Joannem et Franciscum Frellaeos, 1536, [12] + 120 + [2] leaves, in-folio.]

31 [For Plato, see Volume 1, Lesson 5.]

32 [For Galileo, see Lesson 11, below.]

33 [Leonicenus, see note 16, above.]

34 [Jean Ruel or Ruelle, in Latin Ruellius (born 1474, Soissons; died 24 September 1537, Paris), French physician and botanist noted for his De natura stirpium libri tres, a Renaissance treatise on botany, published in Paris by Simon de Colines, in 1536, [10] + 884 + [124] p., in-folio.]

35 He [Jean Ruel] was invited to do so by Étienne [de] Poncher, Bishop of Paris [French prelate and diplomat; born 1446; died 24 February 1524, Lyon], ardent protector of sciences, so that he would have more time to spend on their study [M. de St.-Agy].

36 [A translation of Dioscorides’s De material medica; see Volume 1, Lesson 12, note 62.]

37 [Henry Estienne, also known as Henricus Stephanus (born 1528 or 1531, Paris; died 1598, Lyon), a sixteenth-century French printer and classical scholar.]

38 [For the Estienne family, see Lesson 1, note 56.]

39 [De dissectione partium corporis humani libri tres, un cum figuris, & incisionum declarationibus, stephano riverio chirurgo compositis, Paris: Simon de Colines, 1545, [23] + 375 p., illus., in-folio, see Lesson 1, notes 56.]

40 [De natura stirpium libri tres, see note 34, above.]

41 [Theophrastus, Dioscorides, and Pliny; see Volume 1, Lessons 9, 12, and 13.]

42 [Otto Brunfels or Brunsfeld, also Otho or Othon Brunfels (born c. 1488, near Mainz; died 25 November 1534, Bern), German theologian and botanists, considered one of the fathers of German Botany.]

43 [Herbarum vivae eicones ad naturae imitationem, summa cum diligentia et artificio effigiatae, una cum effectibus earundem, in gratiam veteris illius, et jamjam renascentis herbariae medicinae, Strasburg: Joannem Schottum, 1530, [6] + 266 + [4, index] + [57, appendix] p., in-folio; a book on medicinal herbs, which, with its new and accurate illustrations, contrasted sharply with earlier texts whose authors merely copied from old manuscripts.]

44 A German edition [entitled Contrafayt Kreüterbüch nach rechter vollkommener Art: unud [sic] beschreibungen der Alten, besstberümpten ärtzt, vormals in Teütscher sprach, der masszen nye gesehen noch im Truck auszgangen…] was published [in Strasburg by Hans Schotten; 2 vols in 1, illus., pls] in 1532[-1537] [M. de St.-Agy].

45 The paintings of this artist [Lucas Cranach the Elder; born c. 1472, Kronach, upper Franconia; died 16 October 1553, Weimar] and even his name were unknown in France until recently. The Museum of Le Louvre owned twelve of his paintings. In the one of the prediction of St. John in the Desert, the painter represented his friend [Philipp] Melanchthon [German religious reformer, a primary founder of Lutheranism; born 16 February 1497, Bretten, near Karlsruhe; died 19 April 1560, Wittenberg] under the image of St. John. The Elector of Saxony [Frederick III, powerful early defender of Martin Luther; born 17 January 1463, Torgau; died 5 May 1525, Langau] and [Martin] Luther [German monk, priest, professor of theology, the central figure in sixteenth-century Protestant Reformation; born 10 November 1483, Eisleben, Saxony; died 18 February 1546, Eisleben, Saxony] are among his admirers. The painting of Hercules and Omphale represents the portrait of the same lector among his mistresses. In almost all of his paintings, Cranach wanted to show his aversion to Catholicism [M. de St.-Agy].

46 [Albrecht] Dürer [German painter, engraver, printmaker, mathematician, and theorist; born 21 May 1471, Nuremberg; died 6 April 1528, Nuremberg] is credited with the invention of etching. Like Cranach [see note 45, above], he painted his selfportrait in several of his pieces. In the one showing the crucifixion, for example, in which several martyrs are represented in the background, he painted the portrait of his friend Willibald Pirckheimer [German lawyer, author, and Renaissance humanist, a wealthy and prominent figure in Nuremberg in the sixteenth century; born 5 December 1470, Eichstätt; died 22 December 1530, Nuremberg] and he is self-represented under the image of the sign post. This drawing is kept in the gallery of Vienna [Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna, Austria] [M. de St.-Agy].

47 [Hieronymus Bock (not to be confused with Hieronymus Bosch), in Latin Tragus (born 1498, Heidesbach; died 21 February 1554, Hornbach), German botanist, physician, and Lutheran minister who began the transition from medieval botany to the modern scientific world-view by arranging plants according to their relationships or resemblance.]

48 [Deux-Ponts (two-bridges), the French name for Zweibrücken, a city in the state of Rhineland-Palatinate, southwest Germany, on the Schwarzbach River.]

49 [New Kreuterbuch von Underscheidt, Würckung und Namen der Kreuter, so in teutschen Landen wachsen: auch der selbigen eygentlichem vnd wolgegründtem gebrauch in der Artznei, zu behalten vnd zu fürdern leibsgesuntheyt fast nutz und tröstlichen, vorab gemeynem verstand: wie das auss dreien Registern hienach verzeychnet ordentlich zufinden, Strasburg: Wendel Rihel, 1539, [10] + clxxiiii + lxxxviij p. + [4] bl., in-folio; the first edition of his Kreutterbuch (literally “plant book”) appeared without illustrations—his stated objectives were to describe German plants, including their names, characteristics, and medical uses, but instead of following Dioscorides as was traditional, he developed his own system to classify 700 plants.]

50 [Bock’s second edition of the Kreuterbuch (see note 49, above) was published in Strasburg by Wendel Rihel, in 1546 ([19] + cccliii + [6] + lxxi leaves, illus.); for Fuchs, see Lesson 2, note 60].

51 His diligence made him die of phthisis [ phthisis pulmonalis or tuberculosis, also known as consumption] [M. de St.-Agy].

52 [Aristotle, see Volume 1, Lessons 7 and 8.]

53 [Theophrastus, see Volume 1, Lesson 9.]

54 [Euricius Cordus (not to be confused with his son Valerius Cordus, also a botanist; see Lesson 3, note 47), sometimes called Eberwein (born 1486, Simtshausen; died 24 December 1535, Bremen), German humanist, poet, physician, and botanist; best known for his Botanologicon of 1534 (see note 58, below).]

55 [Melanchthon, see note 45, above.]

56 [Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus, known as Erasmus of Rotterdam or simply Erasmus (born 27 October 1466, Rotterdam; died 12 July 1536, Basel), a Dutch Renaissance humanist, Catholic priest, social critic, teacher, and theologian.]

57 [For Leonicenus, see note 16, above.]

58 [Botanologicon, sive colloguium de herbis, Cologne: Joannem Gymnicum, 1534, 183 + [11] p., in-8°); “a conversation about plants,” the book is set in the form of a dialogue among five people, who together conduct a day-long field trip to a garden and return in the evening to discuss what they saw; his son Valerius Cordus (see note 54, above; and Lesson 3, note 47) published a second edition in Paris: Guillaume Morel, 1551, [8] + 193 + 38 + 395 + [36] p., in-16.]

59 [Nicandri poetae et medici antiquissimi Theriaca et Alexipharmaca; in Latinos uersus redacta, per Euricium Cordum, Medicum, Frankfurt: Christian Egenolph, 1532, 1 vol., in-8°.]

60 [For Fuchs, see Lesson 2, note 60.]

61 [George, Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach (born 4 March 1484, Ansbach; died 27 December 1543, Ansbach), a principal in the German Reformation, a staunch defender of the reformed faith.]

62 [Fuchs was called to Tübingen by Ulrich, Duke of Württemberg (born 8 February 1487, Riquewihr, Alsace; died 6 November 1550, Tubingen), in 1533 to help in reforming the University of Tubingen in the spirit of humanism. He created its first medicinal garden in 1535 and served as chancellor seven times, spending the last thirty-one years of his life as professor of medicine. Fuchs died in Tubingen in 1566.]

63 [De historia stirpium commentarii insignes, maximis impensis et vigiliis elaborati, adjectis earundem vivis plusquam quingentis imaginibus, nunquam antea ad naturae imitationem artificiosus effictis & expressis, Basel: in officina Isingriniana, 1542, [26] + 896 + [4] p., illus., infolio; with 511 woodcut figures, all original and depicted from life, it is considered one of the best illustrated books of all time and a masterpiece of the German Renaissance.]

64 [Vesalius’s textbook of human anatomy, De humani corporis fabrica, published by Johannes Oporinus in Basel in 1543; see Lesson 1, notes 45 and 76.]

65 [De historia stirpium commentarii insignes… Accessit ijs succincta vocum obscurarum in hoc opere occurrentium explicatio, vnà cum quintuplici indice, graecas, latinas, herbarijs seu officinis vsitatas gallicas & italicas nomenclaturas continente, Lyon: Jean de Tournes and Guillaume Gazeau, 1555, 24 + 979 + [12] p.; for Fuchs, see Lesson 2, note 60.]

66 [Valerius] Cordus [see note 54, above; and Lesson 3, note 47] had the habit of signing his name in his manuscripts with a kind of a rebus [a puzzle in which words are represented by combinations of pictures and individual letters], drawing an image of a heart, in Latin cor, to which he added the ending dus; a scholar once mixed up this image of a heart with an o and created a new botanist called Odus [M. de St.-Agy].

67 [For Euricius Cordus, see note 54, above.]

68 [Historiae stirpium libri quatuor, posthumi, nunc primum in lucem editi, adjectis etiam stirpium iconibus, et brevissimus annotatiunculis, Strasburg: Josias Rihelius, 1562.]

69 [Conrad Gessner, see Lesson 4, above.]

70 [Stirpium descriptionis liber quintus, qua in Italia sibi visas describit in praecendtibus vel omnino intactas vel parcius descriptas hunc autem morte praeventus perficere non potuit. De morbo et obitu Valerii Cordi, epistola Hieronymi Schreberi... In ejusdem obitum Casparis Crucigeri elegia. Emendationes quaedam et additiones in Opera Valerii Cordi..., Strasburg: Josias Rihelius, 1563, 1 vol., in folio.]

71 [Pietro Andrea Gregorio Mattioli, also known as Matthiolus (born 23 March 1501, Siena; died 1577, Trento), Italian physician and naturalist who described more than a hundred new species of plants and brought together all that was known about medicinal botany in his translation of the Materia medica of Dioscorides (see Volume 1, Lesson 12, note 62), the first edition of which was published in 1544 in Italian; several later editions appeared in Italian and translations into Latin (Venice, 1554), Czech (Prague, 1562), German (Prague, 1563), and French (Lyon, 1572).]

72 [Ferdinand I, see Lesson 1, note 40.]

73 [Archduke Ferdinand of Austria, Ferdinand II (born 14 June 1529, Linz; died 24 January 1595, Innsbruck), second son of Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand I (see Lesson 1, note 40).]

74 [For Maximilian II, see Lesson 6, note 75.]

75 [See note 71, above; and Volume 1, Lesson 12, note 62.]

76 [Ogier Ghiselin de Busbecq (born 1522, Comines; died 28 October 1592), Flemish writer, herbalist, and diplomat in the employ of three generations of Austrian monarchs; he served as ambassador to the Ottoman Empire in Constantinople and published a book about his time there, entitled Itinera Constantinopolitanum et Amasianum. Ab Augerio Gislenio Busbequij, &c. d. ad Solimannum Turcarum Imperatorem C.M. oratore confecta. Eiusdem Busbequij De acie contra Turcam instruenda consilium, Antwerp: Christophori Plantini, 1581, 167 + [1] p., illus., map, in-8°.]

77 It is impossible to study this period of time without encountering illegitimate children in great numbers. Abbeys, convents, bishoprics, diplomacy, and universities, they were all crowded with bastards. God! What light morals did our ancestors exhibit! [M. de St.-Agy]

78 One of these plants was the lilac, one of the prettiest acquisitions in botany from the Orient [M. de St.-Agy].

79 [Giacomo Antonio Cortusi, also spelled Cortuso or Cartusi (born 1513, Padua; died 21 June 1603), Italian physician and botanist, director of the botanical garden of Padua, the oldest botanical garden in the world, founded in 1545.]

80 [Luca Ghini (born 1490, Casalfiumanese; died 4 May 1556, Bologna), an Italian physician and botanist, best known for establishing the first recorded herbarium, as well as the first botanical garden in Europe.]

81 He [Mattioli] chose this language [Italian; see note 71, above] because most of the pharmacists or, more accurately, the apothecaries for which his book was meant, who did not understand Latin. Our pharmacists of today would have a hard time believing that [M. de St.-Agy].

82 [Commentarii in sex libros Pedaci Dioscoridis Anazerbei de medica materia iam denuo ab ipso autore recogniti, et locis plus mille aucti: adiectis magnis, ac nouis plantarum, ac animalium iconibus, supra priores editiones long è pluribus, ad viuum delineatis: accesserunt quoque ad margines Graeci contextus qu`am plurimi, ex antiquissimis codicibus desumptu, qui Dioscoridis ipsius deprauatam sectionem restituunt..., edited by Pietro Andrea Mattioli (see note 71, above), Venice: Vincenzo Valgrisi, 1565, [172] + 1459 + [13] p.]

83 [Vincenzo Valgrisi (fl. 1540-1572), a distinguished printer of illustrated books, issuing many editions of Mattioli’s version of Dioscorides beginning in 1558; the 1565 edition added three hundred new illustrations of plants, the woodblocks for which were continued to be used in subsequent editions until 1604.]

84 [Pope Pius IV, see Lesson 3, note 61.]

85 [Ferdinand I, see Lesson 1, note 40.]

86 [Charles IX, see Lesson 2, note 41.]

87 [Cosimo de’Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany (not to be confused with Cosimo de’ Medici, founder of the Medici dynasty; born 1389, died 1464) (born 12 June 1519, Florence; died 21 April 1574, Florence), the second Duke of Florence from 1537 until 1569, when he became the first Grand Duke of Tuscany; a patron of the arts, perhaps best known for his creation of the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.]

88 [Rembert Dodoens (born 29 June 1517, Mechelen; died 10 March 1585, Leiden), Flemish physician and botanist, best known for his Stirpium historiae pemptades sex, sive libri XXX, varie ab auctore, paullo ante mortem, aucti et emendati, published by Christophorus Plantinus in Antwerp, in 1583, 1 vol. ([20] + 860 + [25] p.), illus., wood engr.]

89 [Walloon region, known as Wallonia, the predominantly French-speaking southern region of Belgium.]

90 [See note 88, above.]

91 [For Belon, see Lesson 3.]

92 [Rauwolf, see Lesson 5, note 4.]

93 [Prosper Alpinus, see Lesson 4, note 55.]

94 [Melchior Guilandinus, also known as Melchior Wieland (born 1520; died 25 December 1589, Padua), German physician and botanist, best remembered for his Hortus Patavinus: Cui accessere... conjectanea synonimica plantarum eruditissima, Frankfurt: Mathaeus Becker, Johann Theodor & Johann Israel de Bry, 1600, [10] + 93 p., pls.]

95 These barbarians took away the plants he [Guilandinus] had gathered and the notes he had written. If this accident had not occurred, his books would have been much more valuable [M. de St.-Agy].

96 [Falloppio, see Lesson 2.]

97 [Vesalius, see Lesson 1.]

98 [Luigi Anguillara (born c. 1512; died 1570), first director of the botanical garden in Padua and herbalist to the Duke of Ferrara (see note 29, above), displaced by Melchior Guilandinus (see note 94, above) in 1561; author of Semplici dell’eccellente M. Luigi Anguillara, liquali in piu Pareri a diversi nobili huomini scritti appaiono, et nuovamente da M. Giovanni Marinello mandati in luce, Venice: Vincenzo Valgrisi, 1561, 304 + [32] p., illus., in-8°.]

99 [Bernard Trevisan, a reference to one or more Italian alchemists, described as living from 1406 to 1490; born into a noble family in Padua, he is said to have spent his entire life exhausting his family fortune in search of the Philosophers’stone, attempting to create it from chicken eggshells and egg yolk purified in horse manure.]

100 [Papyrus, hoc est commentarius in tria Caii Plinii majoris de papyro capita: accessit Hieronymi Mercurialis Repugnantia, qua pro Galeno strenuè pugnatur: item Melchioris Guilandini assertio sententiae in Galenum â sepronunciatae, Venice: Marcantonio Olmo, 1572, [16] + 280 p., in-4°.]

101 [Garcias ab Horto, Garcia of the Garden, is Garcia de Orta (born 1501 or 1502, Castelo de Vide, Kingdom of Portugal; died 1568, Goa, Portuguese India), a Portuguese physician and naturalist, pioneer of tropical medicine; his extraordinary knowledge of Eastern spices and drugs is revealed in his only known work, Colóquios dos simples e drogas he cousas medicinais da Índia e assi dalgu[m] as frutas: achadas nella onde se tratam algu[m] as cousas tocantes a mediçina, practica, e outras cousas boas pera saber, from the first printing press in India at St. Paul’s College, Goa, in 1563, by João de Endem, [8] + 217 [i.e. 258] leaves, in-4°.]

102 [Bombay, present-day Mumbai, is built on what was once an archipelago of seven islands: Bombay, Parel, Mazagaon, Mahim, Colaba, Worli, and Old Woman’s Island, also known as Little Colaba.]

103 [Dialogues or conversations on the medicine and drugs of India; see note 101, above.]

104 [Clusius (Carolus), Exoticorum libri decem, quibus animalium, plantarum, aromatum, aliorumque peregrinorum fructuum historiae describuntur, Leiden: Raphelengii, 1605, [16] + 378 + [8] + 52 + [27] p., see Lesson 6, notes 73.]

105 [Asafoetida or asafetida, the dried latex exuded from the living underground rhizome or tap root of several species of Ferula, a perennial herb, native to the mountains of Afghanistan and mainly cultivated in nearby India. As its name suggests, asafoetida has a fetid smell, but in cooked dishes, it delivers a smooth flavor, reminiscent of leeks.]

106 [Benzoin, a balsamic resin obtained from the bark of several species of trees of the genus Styrax, used in perfumes, some kinds of incense, as a flavoring, and in medicine.]

107 [Cristóvão da Costa or Cristóbal Acosta, also known as Christoval Acosta Africano (born 1515, perhaps Tangier; died 1594, Huelva, Spain), a Portuguese doctor and naturalist, considered a pioneer in the study of plants of the Orient, especially their use in pharmacology; together with Garcia de Orta (see note 101, above) he is one of the major founders of Indo-Portuguese medicine.]

108 [Tractado de las drogas y medicinas de las Indias orientales con sus plantas debuxadas al biuo por Christoual Acosta medico y cirujano que las vio ocularmente en el qual se verifica mucho de lo que escriuio el doctor Garcia de Orta, Burgos: Martin de Victoria, 1578, [24] + 448 + 38 p., [2] pls, illus., portr., in-4°; the book is based largely on Garcia de Orta‘s Colóquios dos simples e drogas he cousas medicinais da Índia e assi dalgu[m] as frutas: achadas nella onde se tratam algu[m] as cousas tocantes a mediçina, practica, e outras cousas boas pera saber (see note 101, above).]

109 [Mimosa pudica (sensitive plant, sleepy plant, and the touchme-not), a creeping annual or perennial herb often grown for its curiosity value: the compound leaves fold inward and droop when touched or shaken, to protect them from predators, reopening minutes later; the species is native to South and Central America, but is now a pan-tropical weed, growing mostly in shady areas, under trees or shrubs.]

110 We know that Monsieur [René Joachim Henri] Dutrochet his studies of osmosis; born 14 November 1776, Poitou; died 4 [French physician, botanist, and physiologist, best known for [Mimosa pudica] some nervous nodes, which, when cut or February 1847, Paris] claims to have discovered in this plant altered, remove or modify the sensitivity of its leaves, in the same way we can remove and modify sensitivity in animals by a similar operation [M. de St.-Agy].

111 [Nicolás Bautista Monardes (born 1493; died 10 October 1588) was a Spanish physician and botanist, best known for his Historia medicinal de las cosas que se traen de nuestras Indias Occidentales, published in three parts under varying titles in 1565, 1569, and completed in 1574 (Primera y segunda y tercera partes de la historia medicinal de las cosas que se traen de nuestras Indias Occidentales que siruen en medicina; Tratado de la piedra bezaar, y dela yerua escuerçonera; Dialogo de las grandezas del hierro, y de sus virtudes medicinales; Tratado de la nieue y del beuer frio hechos por el doctor Monardes medico de Seuilla ..., Seville: Alonso Escriuano, 1574, [6] + 206 + [2] leaves, illus., in-4°; an identical reprint appeared in 1580 (Primera y segunda y tercera partes de la historia medicinal de las cosas que se traen de nuestras Indias Occidentales que sirven en medicina. Tratado de la piedra Bezaar, y dela yerva Escuerçonera. Dialogo de las grandezas del hierro, y de sus virtudes medicinales. Tratado de la nieve, y del bever frio ...Van en esta impression la tercera parte y el dialogo del hierro nuevamente hechos, que no han sido impressos hasta agora, Seville: Fernando Diaz, 1580, [8] + 162 [i. e. 165] + [1] leaves, illus., wood engrav. portr., in-4°).]

112 [Copal, an amber-like tree resin usually identified with aromatic resins used by the cultures of pre-Columbian Mesoame-rica as ceremonially burned incense and for other purposes.]

113 [Ricin, a highly toxic, naturally occurring carbohydrate-binding protein, produced in the seeds of the castor oil plant Ricinus communis.]

114 [Tolu balsam or balsam of Tolu, the resinous secretion of a South American tree, Myroxylon balsamum, used in certain cough syrups and in perfumery.]

115 [Balsam, a term used for various pleasantly scented plant pro or gummy oleoresins, usually containing benzoic acid or cinnamic acid, obtained from the exudates of various trees and shrubs and used as a base for some botanical medicines.]

116 There is no better proof of the weirdness of humanities than the history of tobacco. A plant completely unknown to the world, except for a few savages from America, is brought to Europe and ends up by changing people’s habits in this part of the globe; it brings a new pleasure, a need of first necessity for a large number of people who cannot live without it. Governments that are skilled at taking advantage of whatever might expand their resources get one of their largest revenues from this plant; thus, the universe becomes dependent upon an acrid, stinky, and gross plant [M. de St.-Agy].

117 [Gaiac or Guaiacum, a slow-growing shrub-like tree of the New World tropics, Guaiacum sanctum, from which is extracted a unique woody and balmy scent used in perfumery.]

118 [Smilax aspera, a species of perennial evergreen vine or shrub in the greenbriar family, Smilacaceae, commonly known as rough bindweed or sarsaparilla.]

119 [Clusius, see Lesson 6, note 73.]

120 [Maximilian II, see Lesson 6, note 75.]

121 [Rudolph II, see Lesson 6, note 76.]

122 [The collected works of Carolus Clusius (see Lesson 6, note 73), published in two parts: Rariorum plantarum historia, Antwerp: Joannem Moretum, 1601, [11] + 364 + cccxlviii + [11] p.; and Exoticorum libri decem, quibus ani-malium, plantarum, aromatum, aliorumque peregrinorum fructuum historiae describuntur, Leiden: Franciscus Raphelingius the younger, 1605, [16] + 378 + [8] + 52 + [27] p.]

123 [Walter Raleigh, see Lesson 5, note 66.]

124 [Francisco López de Gómara, see Lesson 6, note 108.]

125 We can see what Monsieur [Jean-Jacques] Virey [French pharmacist and naturalist; born 1775, died 1846] said about it [the potato] in the Journal de Pharmacie [ et des Sciences Accessoires, vol. 4, pp. 74-84], dated April 1818 [“Recherches historiques sur l’origine et les applications de la chimie à la médecine, et considérations sur son emploi dans la thérapeutique”], and also Cuvier’s kind praise of [Antoine-Augustin] Parmentier [French agronomist, remembered as a vocal promoter of the potato as a food source for humans in France and throughout Europe; born 12 August 1737, Montdidier; died 13 December 1813, Paris] [M. de St.-Agy].

126 [Este family, see note 29, above.]

127 [Conrad Gessner, see Lesson 4.]

128 [Jean Robin (born 1550, died 1629), French horticulturist, gardener-in-chief during the reign of kings Henry III, Henry IV, and Louis XIII; he planted a locust tree in 1602 that still exists today—it is said to be the oldest tree in Paris.]

129 A specific pattern got him [Robin] very excited; the queen [Marie de’Medici; born 26 April 1575, Florence; died 3 July 1642, Cologne] and women at Henry IV’s [see Lesson 2, note 57] court had taken on the hobby of embroidery and their taste led them to reproduce flowers. After they had embroidered the most common ones, they were looking for new ones and as they found some in Robin’s garden, Robin was requested to provide them with new ones. This horticulturist, or botanist, was so protective of his flowers that he preferred to destroy his bulbs rather than to share them. With regard to his jealousy, [Guy] Patin [French physician and man of letters; born 1601, Hodenc-en-Bray, Oise; died 1672, Paris] called him the eunuch of the Hesperides, erat eunuchus Hesperidum. The funny part is that Vigneul de Marville [pseudonym adopted by Bonaventure d’Argonne; French writer, born 1634, Paris; died 1704, Gaillon] refers in his book, entitled Mélanges d’histoire et de littérature recueillis [Rouen; Paris: Augustin Besoigne, 1700-1701, 3 vols, in-12], to erat eunuchus, literally. This opinion would be contradicted by those who consider Vespasien Robin [French botanist; born 1579, died 1662] as his own son; but other authors think that he was only his nephew. Thus, we do not have the answer to this question [M. de St.-Agy].

130 [Robinia acacia, correctly Robinia pseudoacacia, commonly known as the black locust, a tree of the genus Robinia in the subfamily Faboideae of the pea family Fabaceae, native to the southeastern United States, but widely planted and introduced Africa, and Asia.] elsewhere in temperate North America, Europe, Southern Africa, and Asia.]

131 [Grand Duke Cosimo I, see Lesson 3, note 100.]

132 [Luca Ghini, see note 80, above.]

133 [Andre Césalpin, see Lesson 2, note 47.]

134 [Anguillara, see note 98, above.]

135 [Guilandinus, see notes 94 and 95, above.]

136 [Giacomo Antonio Cortusi (born 1513, Padua; died 21 June 1603), professor of botany at Padua, who discovered the plant known today as Cortusa matthioli, a member of the Primrose family, Primulaceae.]

137 As Monsieur Cuvier already mentioned, almost all the names of that time are altered. The real name of Benincasa is Casabona at the Medici court, director of the botanical garden in Flo-[Giuseppe Casabona (born 1535, died 1595), Flemish botanistrence and later at Pisa] [M. de St.-Agy].

138 [Aldrovandi, see Lesson 4, notes 31 and 32.]

139 [Michael Mercatus or Michele Mercati (born 1541, died 1593), Italian physician and naturalist who founded the botanical garden of the Vatican and became famous for his collections of minerals, fossils, and archaeological artifacts.]

140 [King Philip II of Spain, see Lesson 2, note 1; and Lesson 5, note 29.]

141 [Jacob van der Does (born c. 1500, died 1577), schepen (alderman) of Leiden during the siege of that city, in 1573 and 1574, during the Eighty Years’War and the Anglo-Spanish War.]

142 [Dirck Outgaertszoon Cluyt, in Latin Clutius (born 1546; died 1598, Leiden), Dutch pharmacist and botanist, who assisted Carolus Clusius (see Lesson 6, note 73) with the design of the new university garden of Leiden; a great expert on medicinal herbs, Cluyt is also the author of the first Dutch book on apiculture, (see note 143, below).]

143 They were, however, related and very good friends [see note 142, above]. Cluyt dedicated to Clusius the only book he published. It is a book on apiculture that includes observations that were new and precious for that time; it is called Van de byen, haer wonderlich oorsprong, natur, eygenschap [Leiden: J. C. van Dorp, 1597] [M. de St.-Agy].

144 Before that, students had to go to Italy to learn botany [M. de St.-Agy].

145 [Pierre Richer de Belleval (born 1564, Châlons-en-Champagne; died 17 November 1632, Montpellier), French botanist, recognized as the father of scientific botany.]

146 [Louis XIII, see Lesson 2, note 110.]

147 [Ludwig Jungermann (born 4 July 1572, Leipzig; died 7 June 1653), German physician and botanist who designed the botanical garden of Giessen, the oldest botanical garden in Germany.]

148 [Johann Konrad von Gemmingen (born 23 October 1561, Tiefenbronn; died 7 November 1612, Eichstätt), liberal patron of the arts, famous for the magnificent garden that he built and maintained at Eichstätt. The garden was catalogued and described, with financial support from Von Gem-mingen, by Basilius Besler (see note 149, below) in Hortus Eystettensis sive diligens et accurata omnium plantarum, florum stirpium... quae in celeberrimis viridariis arcem episcopalem ibidem cingentibus, hoc tempore conspiciuntur, delineatis et ad vivum repraesentatio..., Altdorf: Kon-rad Bauer, 1613, 4 parts in 1 vol., in-folio; it is said to be the largest and most magnificent botanical publication ever produced.]

149 [Basilius Besler (born 1561, Nuremberg; died 13 March 1629, Nuremberg), a German apothecary and botanist, best known for his monumental Hortus Eystettensis. He was curator of the garden of Johann Konrad von Gemmingen (see note 148, above), archbishop of Eichstätt in Bavaria. The bishop was an enthusiastic botanist who derived great pleasure from his garden, which rivaled the Hortus Botanicus of Leiden among early European botanical gardens outside Italy.]

150 [Besler was assisted by his brother Jerome Besler (see Lesson 8, note 45, below) and Ludwig Jungermann (see note 147, above).]

151 [Guy de la Brosse (born 1586; died 1641, Paris), a French botanist, pharmacist, and physician to King Louis XIII of France (see Lesson 2, note 110); he is also notable for the creation of a major botanical garden of medicinal herbs —the Jardin des plantes (originally Jardin du Roi), the first botanical garden in Paris, and the second in France (after the Montpellier garden created in 1593).]

152 According to Monsieur [François] Chaussier [French anatomist; born 2 July 1746, Dijon; died 19 June 1828] and Monsieur [Nicolas Philibert] Adelon [French physician; born 20 August 1782, Dijon; died 19 July 1862, Paris], this doctor’s name was Charles Bouvard [French chemist and physician, known for using his knowledge of plants to create a number of medicines from common ordinary flowers; born 1572, Montoire-sur-le-Loir; died 22 October 1658]. It is possible that a slip of the tongue, which can happen to anyone, might have caused Monsieur Cuvier to pronounce Herouard instead of Bouvard. Bouvard can be nicknamed, with good reason, the greatest purger of all time. Within one year he gave Louis XIII added forty-seven bloodlettings. No wonder this king lacked [see Lesson 2, note 110] two hundred medicines to which he the strength of character and bravery of spirit that defines the greatest men and real heroes [M. de St.-Agy].

153 [Cardinal Richelieu is Armand Jean du Plessis, Cardinal-Duc de Richelieu et de Fronsac (born 9 September 1585, Paris; died 4 December 1642, Paris), French clergyman, noble, and statesman; famous patron of the arts.]

154 [Jean Robin, see notes 128 and 129, above.]

155 This garden covered only the small triangle that is now known as Place Dauphine [a public square located near the western where a tiny monument was set up in memory of the famous end of the Île de la Cité in the first arrondissement of Paris], [Louis Charles Antoine] Desaix [French general and military leader; born 17 August 1768, Auvergne; died 14 June 1800, Rivalta, Italy] [M. de St.-Agy].

156 This is still what Monsieur [Adrien-Henri] de Jussieu 1853, Paris), son of the more famous Antoine Laurent de Jussieu (born 12 April 1748, Lyon; died 17 September 1836) who published the first natural classification of flowering plants, much of which is still in use] does today, as everybody knows; and we have had the pleasure to accompany him on such field trips. Indeed, while botanical gardens are very useful, they do not offer all the benefits of such field trips [M. de St.-Agy].

157 [For Linnaeus, see Lesson 2, note 112.]

158 [Conrad Gessner, see Lesson 4, above.]

159 [Gaspard Wolf (died 1601,) pupil, friend, and successor of Gessner in the chair of physics at Zurich; he published a volume of collected letters of Gessner, entitled Epistolarum me-dicinalium Conradi Gesneri philosophi et medici Tigurini libri III: his accesserunt eiusdem aconiti primi Dioscoridistione & vsu libellus, Zurich: Christoph Froschover, 1577, [8] asseueratio & de oxymelitis elleborati vtriusq[ue] descrip-+ 140 + 28 p.]

160 [Joachim Camerarius the Younger (born 6 November 1534, Nuremberg; died 11 October 1598, Nuremberg), German physician, botanist, zoologist, and humanist scholar, son of the famous classical scholar Joachim Camerarius the Elder (born 12 April 1500, Bamberg, Bavaria; died 17 April 1574, Leipzig).]

161 [The Barbaros, a wealthy and influential patrician family of Venice that owned large estates in the Veneto above Treviso; members were noted as church various patrons of the arts, military commanders, philosophers, scholars, and scientists.]

162 [The Bernouillis, a patrician family of merchants and scholars, 167. originally from Antwerp, that settled in Basel, Switzerland.]

163 [Joachim Camerarius the Younger, see note 160, above.]

164 [A very popular version of Mattioli’s commentaries on Dioscorides (see notes 71 and 82, above; for Dioscorides, see Volume 1, Lesson 12, note 62), entitled De plantis epitome utilissima, Petri Andreae Matthioli Senensis,... Novis plane, et ad vivum expressis iconibus, descriptionibusque longe & pluribus & accuratiorib. nunc primum diligenter aucta, & locupletata, a d. Ioachimo Camerario,... Accessit,... liber singularis de itinere ab urbe Verona in Baldum montem plantarum ad rem medicam facientium feracissimum, auctore Francisco Calceolario..., Frankfurt: Johann Feyrabend, 1586, [12] + 1003 + [29] p., illus., in-4°.]

165 [Albrecht von Haller, see Lesson 1, note 16.]

166 [Mattioli’s translation of the Materia medica of Dioscorides; see notes 71, 82, and 164, above.]

167 [Opera botanica, per duo saecula desiderata, vitam auctoris et operis historiam Cordi librum quintum cum adnotationibus Gesneri in totum opus ut et Wolphii fragmentum his-tam olim editarum quam nunc prodeuntium cum figuristoriae plantarum Gesnerianae adiunctis, indicibus iconum ultra CCCC. minoris formae, partim ligno excisis partim aeri insculptis complectentia, quae ex bibliotheca D. Christophori Iacobi Trew... nunc primum in lucem edidit et praefatus est D. Casimirus Christophorus Schmiedel, Nuremberg: Johann Michael Seligmann, 1754, [4] + lvi + 130 p., 43 pls.]

Table des illustrations

Légende Vite vinifera Plate from Mattioli’s Commentarii in sex libros Pedaci Dioscoridis… (1565).
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