-Search for letters
-Search in texts






Link: • Carl Linnaeus to George Edwards, 20 March 1758 n.s.
Dated 1758 d 20 Martii. Sent from Uppsala (Sweden) to ? (). Written in Latin.


Three days ago Linnaeus received George Edwards’sEdwards, George (1693-1773).
British. Ornithologist and artist.
Visited the Netherlands, France and
Scandinavia. Best known for his
History of birds (1747-1751).
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
valuable present of 75 elegant plates of birds and other rare animals and has contemplated them with great admiration [Edwards had sent plates from the forthcoming Gleanings of natural historyEdwards, George Gleanings of
natural history, exhibiting figures of
quadrupeds, birds, insects, plants
3 vol. ( London, 1758-1764).
]. Nothing can be more valuable for the advancement of solid natural knowledge than such beautiful and excellent figures accompanied by such exact descriptions. Linnaeus has always valued Edwards’s publications very much, as he will understand from the first volume of the Systema naturae, 10th editionLinnaeus, Carl Systema
, 10th edition (Stockholm
1758-1759). Soulsby no. 58.
[Linnaeus refers to the 10th edition, which was published in two volumes, “Animalia” 1758 and “Vegetabilia” 1759. The third volume, “Mineralia” was never published]. Linnaeus will add whatever can collect of scientific interest from these last plates, in an appendix to the second volume. Linnaeus is particularly fascinated by the “Satyr”, which will probably prove to be a different animal from the “Orang-outang” of Bontius’s [Jacob de BondtBondt, Jacob de (1592-1631).
Dutch. Physician and a pioneer of
tropical medicine, Batavia (Jakarta),
Dutch East Indies. His 1631 work
Historiae naturalis et medicae Indiae
introduced the word
"Orang Hutan" into Western
] Java [Linnaeus refers to de Bondt’s Historiae Naturalis & Medicae Indiae Orientalis libri sex, which was published by Willem PisoPiso, Willem (1611-1675).
Dutch. Naturalist, physician. Leader of
a scientific expedition to Brazil, with,
among others, Georg Markgraf.
in his G. Pisonis [...] de Indiae utriusque Re Naturali et Medica libri quatuordecimPiso, Willem , Georg Marggraf, &
Jacob de Bondt
G. Pisonis [...]
de Indiae utriusque Re Naturali et
Medica libri quatuordecim : (G.
Marcgravii [...] Tractatus topographicus
& meterologicus Brasiliae [...]
quibus additi sunt illius & aliorum
commentarii de Brasiliensium &
Chilensium Indole & lingua. [...] J.
Bontii Historiae Naturalis & Medicae
Indiae Orientalis libri sex [...] in
quorum librorum penultimo, naturae
Animalium, Avium & Piscium: in
ultimo autem, Arborum & Plantarum
species mirae, Europaeis incognitae, ac
ad vivum delineatae, explicantur.
Commentarii [...] a G. Pisone, in
ordinem redacti & illustrati, atque
annotationibus [...] adaucti. [... ]G.
Pisonis Mantissa Aromatica; sive de
Aromatum cardinalibus quatuor, et
Plantis aliquot indicis in medicinam
receptis, relatio nova)
3 pts.
(Amsterdam. 1658).
] but could well be the same as the “Indian Satyr” of Tulpius [Nicolaes Tulp’sTulp, Nicolaes (1593-1674).
Dutch. Surgeon and mayor of Amsterdam,
portrayed by Rembrandt in the
<i<The anatomy lesson of Dr
Nicolaes Tulp.
] description of a creature in his Observationes MedicaeTulp, Nicolaes Observationes
(Amsterdam, 1641).
]. It would be interesting to know whether there is a space between the canine teeth and the rest, and whether the sexual organs of the females are like human ones.

Edwards’s portrait in Linnaeus’s study reminds him every day of his indefatigable assiduity in collecting, delineating and describing.

Edwards’s Jerbua is the Mus Jaculus described by Fredrik HasselquistHasselquist, Fredrik
(1722-1752). Swedish. Physician and
naturalist, explorer. Studied under
Linnaeus and Lars Roberg 1741-1749. Went
to Egypt, Syria, Palestine, Cyprus,
Rhodes and the island of Chios. Died
near Smyrna. Son of Magnus and Helena
Maria Hasselquist, brother of Andreas
Hasselquist. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
in the Uppsala transactions [Linnaeus refers to the transactions of the Royal Society of Sciences at Uppsala, Kungliga Vetenskaps-Societeten i UppsalaKungliga Vetenskaps-Societeten i
Swedish. The Royal
Society of Sciences at Uppsala was
founded in 1728.
, i.e., Acta societatis regiae scientiarum Upsaliensis Acta societatis regiae
scientiarum Upsaliensis
] for 1750 ["Mus Aegyptius"Hasselquist, Fredrik "Mus
Aegyptius", Acta societatis
regiae scientiarum Upsaliensis

(1744-1750, [1751]).
] and in the Stockholm transactions [Linnaeus refers to the transactions of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Kungliga Svenska VetenskapsakademienKungliga Svenska Vetenskapsakademien,
Swedish. The Royal Swedish
Academy of Sciences, Stockholm. Founded
in 1739.
, i.e., Kungliga Vetenskapsakademiens handlingar Kungliga
Vetenskapsakademiens handlingar

(1739-) (Transactions of the Royal
Swedish Academy of Sciences).
] for 1752 ["Egyptiska bärg-råttan. Beskrifven"Hasselquist, Fredrik
"Egyptiska bärg-råttan.
Beskrifven", KVAH 13 (1752),
] as well as in his travel reports [Iter Palaestinum eller resa til heliga landetHasselquist, Fredrik Iter
Palaestinum eller resa til heliga
(Stockholm 1757).
] and by Ulisse AldrovandiAldrovandi, Ulisse (1522-1605).
Italian. Naturalist and ornithologist,
physician and professor at Bologna.
in his Quadrupedum omnium bisulcorum historiaHasselquist, Fredrik .The spur-winged plover, described by Alexander RussellRussell, Alexander
(c.1715-1768). British. Physician and
naturalist. In 1740 he went to Aleppo in
Syria as physician to the English
factory. Famous for his The Natural
History of Aleppo
(1756; 2nd ed.
1794). After his return to England and
Scotland he worked as a physician.
Half-brother of Patrick Russell.
in his The natural history of AleppoRussel, Alexander The natural
history of Aleppo: and parts adjacent.
Containing a description of the city,
and the principal natural productions in
its neighbourhood; together with an
account of the climate, inhabitants, and
(London, 1756).
and in Edwards’s work, is Charadrius spinosus. His long-tailed duck is frequent in Sweden all winter long. The lower figure represents Chaetodon ciliaris, and here Linnaeus refers to his Systema naturae, 10th edition, as well as his Museum S:ae R:ae M:tis Adolphi Friderici Regis SuecorumLinnaeus, Carl Museum S:ae
R:ae M:tis Adolphi Friderici Regis
Suecorum [...] in quo animalia rariora
imprimis et exotica: quadrupedia, aves,
amphibia, pisces, insecta, vermes
describuntur et determinantur, Latine et
Suetice cum iconibus
and Pehr Osbeck’sOsbeck, Pehr (1723-1805).
Swedish. Clergyman, botanist explorer.
Studied at Uppsala under Linnaeus
1745-1750. Chaplain on ships of the
Swedish East India Company on voyages to
China. Vicar of Hasslöv (Halland).
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
,Dagbok öfwer en ostindisk resaOsbeck, Pehr Dagbok
öfwer en ostindisk resa åren
1750. 1751. 1752. Med anmärkningar
uti naturkunnigheten, främmande
folkslags språk, seder,
hushållning, m.m. [...] Jämte
12 tabeller och afledne
skepps-predikanten : Toréns
(Stockholm 1757).


a. original holograph (Private collection). [1] [2]


1. A selection (1821), vol. 2, p. 496-498   p.496  p.497  p.498.