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C18

Link: linnaeus.c18.net/Letter/L3535 • Johan Peter Falck to Carl Linnaeus, 25 February 1765 n.s.
Dated 25 febr. 1765. Sent from St Petersburg (Russia) to (). Written in Swedish.

upSUMMARY

Johan Peter FalckFalck, Johan Peter (1732-1774).
Swedish. Professor of botany and
curator of the botanical garden of St
Petersburg. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
most humbly asks Linnaeus to forgive him for not having answered his letter earlier [this letter has not come down to us]. It is his illnesses, melancholia with the most painful symptoms, that delayed him. It is Falck’s sedentary life and restricted living and nobody to confide in that is the problem. The people in the household have suffered from the fever of Uppsala [malaria]. The benefactor’s [Karl Friedrich KruseKruse, Karl Friedrich (?-1799).
Russian. Personal physician to the
Russian czar. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
] wife died just after New Year. There have now been great changes in the household. Among them, the benefactor’s daughter has been placed in the care of a French lady, the benefactor has moved to the imperial court, and the house will be put up to sale.

Falck would like to take this opportunity to tell Linnaeus that this tragedy has also created new possibilities for him.

The Collegium Medicum is interested in finding someone who will establish and run the medical garden, teach botany to students of surgery and pharmacy and be responsible for the Liberkühn’s [Johann Natanael LieberkühnLieberkühn, Johann Natanael
(1711-1756). German. Physician,
Berlin.
] Cabinet that the Empress [Catherine IICatherine II, (1729-1796).
Russian. Empress of Russia, reigned from
1762-1796. Wife of Peter III.
] donated to the Medical Garden. Since it became known to the Collegium Medicum that a Swedish student who had been trained by the famous Linnaeus himself had been seen by one of the Assessors at Counsellor Kruse’s office, they approached Falck. The president of the Collegium, Baron CzerkassofCzerkassof, Russian. , asked Falck personally to present his curriculum vitae. However, Falck could not give any promises since he still had almost two years left of his contract to his benefactor. Later, with his benefactor’s agreement, half in desperation, and followed by severe headache, Falck finally applied for the position. He would have considered it a severe setback, if he had had to return to Sweden with empty hands, although it was risky to accept the position.

Falck has received the conditions for this work from the Collegium. The salary is 500 roubles including free housing, firewood, candles and a male servant to help him. If he only were healthy, everything would be fine. Finally Falck assures himself of Linnaeus support.

Falck asks Linnaeus to help him with seeds since the garden is as poor in species as he reported earlier. Now, there are mostly medical plants, some coffee trees and some geraniums. He assures Linnaeus that as soon as there is something to share he will send material. The Collegium has promised Falck that the young pharmacists and surgeons in the field will collect all kind of seeds. Falck always requests Spirea.

Some seeds of Trollius asiaticus and the mother plant are enclosed for Linnaeus. Otherwise there is nothing new to tell, but Gerhard Friedrich MüllerMüller, Gerhard Friedrich
(1705-1783). German. Historian.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
has been appointed Director of an orphanage in Moscow. There has been a dispute between Müller and Jonas Theodor FagraeusFagraeus, Jonas Theodor
(1729-1797). Swedish. Physician at
Alingsås. Correspondent of
Linnaeus.
. It pleases Falck that Commissioner Clas AlströmerAlströmer, Clas
(1736-1794). Swedish. Baron,
industrialist. Sent plants and specimens
to Linnaeus from his travels abroad.
Bought Linnaeus’s “little herbarium”,
now in the Natural History Museum in
Stockholm. Son of Jonas Alströmer,
brother of August, Johan and Patrick
Alströmer. Correspondent of
Linnaeus
is back home safely.

Falck forwards his most sincere greetings to Linnaeus’s wife [Sara Elisabet LinnaeaAlströmer, Clas
(1736-1794). Swedish. Baron,
industrialist. Sent plants and specimens
to Linnaeus from his travels abroad.
Bought Linnaeus’s “little herbarium”,
now in the Natural History Museum in
Stockholm. Son of Jonas Alströmer,
brother of August, Johan and Patrick
Alströmer. Correspondent of
Linnaeus
], the young daughters [Elisabeth Christina LinnaeaLinnaea, Sara Christina
(1751-1835). Swedish. Daughter of Carl
Linnaeus and Sara Elisabet Linnaea.
Sister of Carl Linnaeus the Younger and
of Elisabeth Christina, Louisa and
Sophia Linnaea.
, Louisa LinnaeaLinnaea, Louisa (1749-1839).
Swedish. Daughter of Carl Linnaeus and
Sara Elisabet Linnaea. Sister of Carl
Linnaeus the Younger and of Elisabeth
Christina, Sara Christina and Sophia
Linnaea.
, Sara Christina LinnaeaLinnaea, Sara Christina
(1751-1835). Swedish. Daughter of Carl
Linnaeus and Sara Elisabet Linnaea.
Sister of Carl Linnaeus the Younger and
of Elisabeth Christina, Louisa and
Sophia Linnaea.
, Sophia LinnaeaLinnaea, Sophia (1757-1830).
Swedish. Daughter of Carl Linnaeus and
Sara Elisabet Linnaea. Sister of Carl
Linnaeus the Younger and of Elisabeth
Christina, Louisa and Sara Christina
Linnaea. Wife of Samuel Christoffer
Duse.
] and to Linnaeus.

P.S. Pavel Grigorevich DemidovDemidov, Pavel Grigorevich
(1738-1821). Russian. Linnaeus´s
student. Brother of Alexandr Grigorevich
Demidov and Petr Grigorevich Demidov.
Son of Georgij Akinfievich Demidov and
grandson of Akinfiy Nikitich Demidov. He
created a natural history museum in
Moscow which was later given to the
University of Moscow. Correspondent of
Linnaeus.
is pleased that the minerals have arrived safely. He visited Falck some days ago and told him that he had depicted the new greyish hawk that Falck found in his collection. He has also described it and will send both the drawing and description to Linnaeus. Falck most humbly asks if Linnaeus could consider writing to Demidov. He really deserves it.

upMANUSCRIPTS

a. (LS, IV, 121-122). [1] [2] [3]

upEDITIONS

1. Bref och skrifvelser (1912), vol. I:6, p. 45-48   p.45  p.46  p.47  p.48.