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Link: linnaeus.c18.net/Letter/L0301 • Carl Linnaeus to Albrecht von Haller, 23 September 1739 n.s.
Dated 1739. die 12 Septembr:. Sent from Stockholm (Sweden) to Göttingen (Germany). Written in Latin.

Viro inclyto,
Botanico Celeberrimo,
Alberto Hallero,
Professori Clarissimo,
s[alutem] pl[urimam] d[icit]
Carolus Linnaeus.

Litterae Tuae (mihi omni auro chariores) datae d[ie] 24 Novembris 1739 [sic] [1] accessere ad me hoc anno die 12 Augusti per concionatorem Ecclesiae Germanicae, Holmiae instructum, fatum morae mihi latet.

Extuli millies HermanniHermann, Paul (1646-1695).
German. Botanist, physician at Batavia,
professor of botany at Leiden.
manes. Parum fuit saliisse fontes omnes Horti Regis Gallorum ad accessum Hermanni, jubente TournefortioTournefort de, Joseph Pitton
(1656-1708). French. Botanist and
explorer, professor of botany at Paris.
, si generosum Hermanni animum cum Tournefortiano conferatur [sic]. Hermannus Tournefortio antea obtulit Professionem Botanicam, quam alio commutaret, quo viveret Tournefortius. Quid itaque de Te dicam. Ipse Peregrinum amas, vocas, professoriam dignitatem et munus et hortum fere offers. Vix frater fratri, vix pater hoc filio unico. Uno verbo, plures mortales vidi, multi me amarunt, nullus mihi obtulit tanta, quanta Tu.[2] Verbis grates redderem, si possem, sed nequeo digna reddere verba. Sancta mente servabo, dum vixero, et alii post me, Tuum nomen.

Non respondeo, cum Tu Te patrem praestes. Ego filius ero. Dabo! En historiam qualemcunque vitae meae in hunc usque diem! Anno 1730 docui Botanicen in Horto Botanico Upsaliensi. Rediit eodem anno amicus noster communis, D[ominus] D[octor] Rosen. Ego studiosous Medicinae vicarius eram RudbeckiiRudbeck, Olof (1660-1740).
Swedish. Professor of medicine,
botanist, ornithologist, travelled in
Lapland. Linnaeus’s teacher.
in Botanicis, ille in Anatomicis et simul Adjunctus Medicinae. Aegre tulit ille non sibi tradidendas fore Botanicas lectiones, quas non intelligebat, ne noticiam novit.[3] 1732 adii Lapponiam, redii, docui Docimasticen et Botanicen per annum unicum.[4] Ille interim duxit uxorem per quam affinis factus fuit omnium facile Professorum in Academia Upsaliensi, imo et Cancellarii Academiae associatus fere fuit. Hoc facto me non publice collegia traditurum voluit, proin (pauperrimus quod natus eram) fame vel perirem, vel judicem Cancellarium vocarem, hoc frustra, proin prius eligere debui. Discessi Upsalia. Iter ingressus sum per Dalekarliam, sic providente Deo.[5] Facto itinere redii in primariam urbem istius provinciae Dalekarlicae Fahlunam. Docui Mineralogiam. Praxin exercui minimam. Amatus ab omnibus permansi per mensem. Erat ibi medicus, quem divitem dicere non erubescebat vulgus. Imo erat inter omnes in ista pauperrima provincia ditissimus nomine MoraeusMoraeus, Johan (1672-1742).
Swedish. Town physician at Falun,
Linnaeus’s father-in-law.
. Vir etiam inter Sueciae medicos, doctrinam si spectes, facile primus. Vir iste nullum vitae genus Medicina inferiorem (praxin hic spectans) esse millies pronunciavit; me interim amabat. Adii domum ejus, non semel gratus ipsi hospes. Filiam habuit (et aliam aetate inferiorem) pulchram, quam ambiebat Liber Baro quidam frustra. Vidi, obstupui, praecordia intima sensi attonitus novis intumuisse curis. Amavi, arsi, tandem victa blanditiis, votis, etc. et me amabat, promisit, dixit, fiat![6] Patrem adloqui, erubescebam pauperrimus; dixi tamen. Voluit et noluit. Me amabat pater, non mea fata. Dixit, intacta permanebit per tres annos, dicam tum demum. Compositis rebus, ad iter necessaria paratis, exivi patriam, 36 nummis aureis dives. Promotionem medicam mox obtinui. Redire magno meo cum commodo non potui. Permansi in Belgio, ut novisti. Interim amicus meus summus, Cl[arissimus] BrowalliusBrowallius, Johan (1707-1755).
Swedish. Professor of physics, later of
theology. Bishop of Åbo.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
litteras amicae meae ad me per tabellarios continuo transmitteret, sancte praestitit. Ultimo anno 1738, quo apud van RoyenRoyen, Adriaan van (1705-1779).
Dutch. Professor of botany, director of
the botanical garden of Leiden.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
vixi (quod erat quarto anno, non enim socer plures quam tres concessit annos) et hoc quidem nutu sponsae, sibi proximum judicavit Browallius esse, mea enim recommendatione factus fuit Professor Physices Aboensis. Mox me non reversurum in patriam demonstrabat. Sponsam meam ambiebat. Fere obtinuit, ni intervenisset alius, fallaciam qui prodidit, punitus et ipse fuit mille fatis adversis Browallius.[7]

Redii tandem, sed pauper. Puella me amabat, non illum. Sedem fixi Holmiae irrisus ab omnibus ob meam Botanicen. Quot insomnes noctes et laboriosas horas transegerim, nullus dixit, quam vero a SiegesbeckioSiegesbeck, Johann Georg
(1686-1755). German. Prussian botanist,
doctor of medicine at Wittenberg in
1716, physician and director of the
botanical garden at St Petersburg
1735-1747. One of the most bitter
opponents of Linnaeus’s sexual system.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
eram annihilatus, omnes uno ore acclamabant, non erat, qui vel servum mihi curandum obtulit. Transegi vitam quocunque possem modo, tamen honeste. Incepi praxin exercere valde lente, sed brevi fata cessabant adversa, et post diuturnas nebulas Phoebus. Emersi, ad primates accersitus, cessare omnia secunde. Nullus aeger sanabatur me non praesente. Pecunias accepi. Ab hora quarta matutina in seram vesperam aegros adii, noctes apud aegros consumsi. “Heu” dixi. Dat Aesculapius bona omnia, Flora vero solos Siegesbeckios. Interdixi Floram, quae collegi adversaria (heu nimis multa) aeterno pulvere sepelienda millies decrevi, Siegesbeckio nunquam responsurum fere juravi. Mox primarius medicus Classis navalis constitutus fui. Conventus Civium mox me Botanicum Regium, publice quo docerem Botanicen in Regia sede Stockholmiae, dixere, stipendio anuuo auxerunt. Incepi iterum amare plantas. Sponsam adii tum meam quinquennem, jam dignus thalamum intravi sponsae et uxoris. Socer tamen sat pecuniis ipse delectatur, nec generi facile concedit, sed nec opus habeo, et quis a me generetur, habebit.

Nullam aliam ob causam me odio habuit quondam D[ominus] Rosen, quam ob Professionem Botanicam. Rudbeckius enim senex erat, brevi moriturum sperabat. Me amare Botanicen et a multis me amari vidit, ne forte aliquando ipsi praeferretur Linnaeus, expelli debuit.

Nunc vero utraque Professio medicinae vacabit. Ambo senes Professores Rudbeck et RobergRoberg, Lars (1664-1742).
Swedish. Physician and naturalist.
Professor of medicine at Uppsala.
Founder of the first university
hospital. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
dimissionem ambiunt, quod si fiat, forte Rosen erit successor Robergii, forte ego Rudbeckii.[8] Sin secus, Stockholmiae et vivere et mori cupio, nec competitoris defendam fractum. Valeo. Sin vero Botanices Professio Upsaliae mea non fiat, et me tum (post tres menses) vocares, accederem, si cum uxorcula daretur. Vel si aliquando Te videre liceret Hamburgi, hanc unicam ob causam Hamburgum adirem, licet longe sepositus vivo. Tanti Te facio. Utinam ante fata Tecum loqui contigisset et Te coram videre! Vale, vive diu felix artis nostrae fidus.

Dabam Stockholmiae, 1739 die 12 Septembr[is].

[a][a] : MS1 [added in the left
margin
]
P.S. Si possis aliquo modo, quaeso, cures, ut habeam Dissertationes Tuas de Veronicis et Pedicularibus,[9] sed prae omnibus Synopsin pl[antarum] Helveticarum.[a][a] : MS1 [added in the left
margin
]
[10]

[b][b] : MS1 [added in the left
margin
]
Si rescribas, mittantur literae franco Hamburgum, sub couvert ad Societatem Regiam Scientiarum Upsaliae. [a][a] : MS1 [added in the left
margin
]

Si ullo modo possis, mihi des, oro, Dissertationes Tuas de Veronicis et Pedicularibus. Ac si daretur videre iter Tuum Sylvae Hercyniae![11] Synopsin Pl[antarum] Helveticarum Lugduni imprimi a Belgis audivi, et ab iis facile habebo; utinam brevi! Commentaria in Boerhaavii institutiones impressa esse percepi.[12] E Belgio petii dudum. Etiamnum vero non obtinui, brevi habebo.

Peractum esse Cl[arissimi] HuberiHuber, Johannes Jacobus
(1707-1778). German. Anatomist,
botanist. Professor at Kassel. Albrecht
von Haller’s assistant.
iter laetor. Utinam mox prodiret! Sic Tu plura praestas, quam alius ullus.[13]

Quaeso, per dies mox rescribas, utrum a Cliffortio Hortum accepisti nec ne?[14] Dixi ipsi millies. Si non accepisti, mittam cum prima navi Hamburgum. Significes modo, ubi deponatur. Cliffortius enim mihi dedit decem exemplaria.

Quod van Royen non respondeat, vix mihi mirum videtur. Novisti forte, quid hoc anno passus sit, quid cum prodromo Florae suae agendum habuit.[15] Respondebit. Te per me bene novit.

Siegesbeckii primitias Florae Petropolitanae[16] et Cl[arissimi] Ludwigii aphorismos botanicos[17] nunquam vidi. Qua ratione comparabo?

Quod falso narrarunt de Tua sanitate Galli, ex toto corde laetor. Utinam tam diu viveres salvus, quam diu Ego pro Te vitam dare vellem meam!

Lateo in obscuro. Si Upsaliam pervenero, praxin medicam interdicam. Solum plantas tum tractabo. Si semina aliquot habes, mihi mittas vel alia. Quas mittis inscribas:
Carolus Linnaeus
Stockholm
på Apothequet Swanen

Dabam Stockholmiae, 1739 die 15 Augusti[c][c] : MS1 [read] Septembris

upSUMMARY

Albrecht von Haller’s letter dated 24 November 1738 November (n.s.) did not reach Linnaeus until 12 August (1739).

Linnaeus has praised the late Paul Hermann many times considering his generous conduct towards Joseph Pitton de Tournefort. Linnaeus wonders what to say about Haller, who shows such affection towards a stranger and offers him a professorial appointment and his garden. This is hardly done by a father to his own son. Nobody has ever offered Linnaeus so much as Haller.

Linnaeus gives Haller the story of his life: in 1730 he taught botany at Uppsala. Nils Rosén von Rosenstein returned that year. Linnaeus was a medical student and Olof Rudbeck the Youngers’s deputy in botany. Rosenstein was his deputy in anatomy and adjunct professor of medicine. In 1732 Linnaeus went to Lapland. When he returned he taught metallurgy and botany for a year. During that time Rosenstein married a woman, through whom he easily got acquainted with all the professors of Uppsala University. Linnaeus left Uppsala and went to Dalecarlia and then to Falun, where he stayed for a month. There was a rich physician, Johan Moraeus, who had two daughters. Linnaeus fell in love with the elder one, who at last accepted his proposal and was to wait for him three years. Johan Moraeus liked Linnaeus, but not the fact that he was very poor. Linnaeus left the country with 36 ducats only. He took his medical degree immediately, but stayed on in Holland. During that time a good friend of his, Johan Browallius, sent the young lady’s letters by post. The last year, when Linnaeus stayed at Adriaan van Royen’s house, was the fourth year of his absence and Browallius told the young girl that Linnaeus would never return to Sweden. Then he started to court her himself. He almost obtained her, if another friend had not revealed him. Linnaeus returned to Sweden at last, still poor, but the girl loved him. He settled in Stockholm and everyone laughed at his botany, since Johann Georg Siegesbeck had annihilated him. But gradually there was a turn of fortune. He paid visits to patients all day long. He left botany and swore never to answer Siegesbeck. He soon became a naval physician and thereafter the civil council made him a royal botanist to teach in Stockholm with an annual stipend. Once again his love for plants revived and finally he could marry his bride. At the time both the medical professorships were vacant. Both Olof Rudbeck the Younger and Lars Roberg were old and offered their resignations. Nils Rosén von Rosenstein will probably succeed Roberg and Linnaeus Rudbeck.

Linnaeus would like to see Haller in Hamburg.

P.S.

Linnaeus would like to have Haller’s dissertations on Veronicae and Pediculares but above all his “Synopsis” of Swiss plants.

He would also like to see Haller’s description of his Hercynian journey.

He heard that the commentaries on Herman Boerhaave’s lectures are printed. He is happy to hear that Johannes Jacobus Huber’s journey is finished.

Linnaeus wants to know if Haller received Hortus Cliffortianus.

Linnaeus has neither seen Siegesbeck’s Primitiae Florae Petropolitanae nor Christian Gottlieb Ludwig’s botanical aphorisms.

If Linnaeus gets to Uppsala, he will devote himself entirely to plants.

Linnaeus would like to have seeds.

upMANUSCRIPTS

a. original holograph (KB, Autograph Collection). [1] [2] [3] [4]

upEDITIONS

1. Epistolarum ab eruditis viris ad Alb. Hallerum scriptarum I-VI (1773), vol. 1
2. Collectio epistolarum (1792), p. 38-42 .
3. A selection (1821), vol. 2, p. 331-338   p.331  p.332  p.333  p.334  p.335  p.336  p.337  p.338.
4. Vie de Linné (1832), vol. 2, p. 92 .
5. Vita Caroli Linnaei (1957), p. 191-193 .

upTEXTUAL NOTES

a.
MS1 [added in the left margin]
b.
MS1 [added in the left margin]
c.
MS1 [read] Septembris

upEXPLANATORY NOTES

1.
See Albrecht von Haller to Linnaeus, 24 November 1738 n.s.Letter L0261.
2.
Haller says in his letter to Linnaeus, 11 January 1739 n.s.Letter L0270, that he wants Linnaeus as his successor at Göttingen.
3.
In 1728 Linnaeus came to Uppsala. The two most renowned professors there were Lars Roberg and Olof Rudbeck the Younger, both in medicine. These two gentlemen were rather old and inactive at that time and Linnaeus soon realised that no botanical lectures could be expected. Botany did not exist as a subject of its own at Uppsala, but was included in medicine. Actually he himself, who was to become the greatest of botanists, never attended one single lecture in botany! Instead he soon found himself in charge of the botanic garden started by Olof Rudbeck the ElderRudbeck, Olof (1630-1702).
Swedish. Physician, historian,
naturalist. Founder of the Uppsala
University Botanical Garden. Professor
of medicine at Uppsala.
in the 1650’s and on 4 May 1730 he started to show plants to medical students.
4.
5.
In 1734 Linnaeus undertook his Dalecarlia tour, Linnaeus, Linnés Dalaresa, Iter Dalecarlium, jämte Utlandsresan, Iter ad exteros, och Bergslagsresan, Iter ad fodinas .
6.
7.
8.
When Olof Rudbeck the Younger, professor of botany at Uppsala, died in 1740, Linnaeus hoped to succeed him. However, Nils Rosén von Rosenstein was appointed to this office. Linnaeus became professor of medicine and botany at Uppsala in 1741.
9.