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Link: • Carl Linnaeus to Carl Johan Gyllenborg, 6 May 1767 n.s.
Dated 1767 d. 6 Maji.. Sent from Uppsala (Sweden) to (). Written in Swedish.


Linnaeus reminds Carl Johan GyllenborgGyllenborg, Carl Johan
(1741-1811). Swedish. Count and lawyer,
president of the administrative court of
appeal. Linnaeusís student in 1748.
that when he visited Uppsala there was a discussion about the successor to Johan Gottschalk WalleriusWallerius, Johan Gottschalk
(1709-1785). Swedish. Professor of
chemistry at Uppsala.
, who had so honourably served his term. Linnaeus can now report that a proposal had been prepared, suitable candidates being Torbern BergmanBergman, Torbern (1735-1784).
Swedish. Professor of chemistry,
metallurgy and pharmacy at Uppsala.
Linnaeusís student. Correspondent of
, Lars HjortzbergHjortzberg, Lars (1727-1789).
Swedish. Docent in chemistry, adjunct in
and Anders Philip TidströmTidström, Anders Philip
(1723-1779). Swedish. Chemist and
metallurgist. Studied under Linnaeus.
University teacher of chemistry.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.

Linnaeus writes that the Chair [in chemistry] is one of the most important for the numerous mining enterprises in Sweden, and was first established by the King [Adolf FredrikAdolf Fredrik, (1710-1771).
Swedish. King of Sweden. Reigned
1751-1771. Married to Lovisa Ulrika.
Father of Gustav III. Chancellor of
Uppsala university 1747-1751.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
] and Henning Adolph GyllenborgGyllenborg, Henning Adolph
(1713-1775). Swedish. Count,
councillor. Student at Uppsala and
member of the Royal Swedish Academy of
Sciences. Correspondent of Linnaeus.

Linnaeus considers that Bergman is a fairly good mathematician and born to be an experimental physicist and if, in due course, he were to be appointed to that Chair, he would be an ornament to the University. But Linnaeus had never heard that Bergman, prior to the vacancy in chemistry, had ever even thought about chemistry.

Hjortsberg was teaching in chemistry for a short while, but as far as Linnaeus was aware he never made anything of value for this application.

Linnaeus considers that Tidström is undoubtedly the best, since he understood mineralogy, had visited most of the mines, and had made all the chemical experiments during the eight years he had assisted Wallerius.

Linnaeus can report to Gyllenborg that the general public complain that the sciences at the University are in poor shape and that if the wrong person is appointed, who did not have sufficient knowledge and love for his profession, the Chair would be like a clock without a pendulum. The late Carl GyllenborgGyllenborg, Carl (1679-1746).
Swedish. Chancellor of Uppsala
University and Lund University. Chancery
President (Kanslipresident) at the
Swedish Government Offices (Kungliga
Kanslikollegium) in 1738. Correspondent
of Linnaeus.
had made Uppsala famous within the period of a few years through his policy of only appointing the most knowledgeable persons; the opposite would occur if an orientalist were appointed to be a poet, an economist to be an orator, and a mathematician to be a chemist.

Linnaeus praises the Queen [Lovisa UlrikaLovisa Ulrika, (1720-1782).
Swedish. Queen of Sweden 1751-1771.
Married to Adolf Fredrik. Mother of
Gustav III. Sister of Fredric II of
Prussia. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
] and knows that she is a benefactor of the sciences. He hopes that Gyllenborg could have a word with the Queen in order to encourage her, in her turn, to have a word with the King in urging him to appoint Tidström, as this will at least leave the Chair in Chemistry in the same condition as left by Wallerius, which would be an impossible task for the others. Gyllenborg, says Linnaeus, is well aware that this is a Chair that cannot be held just by anybody. Gyllenborg is reminded that, of all the present professors, Linnaeus is the only one left who understands mineralogy well and chemistry reasonably well. In closing, Linnaeus asserts that this is among the sciences that demand the greatest experience.


a. original holograph (Private collection). [1] [2] [3]


1. Bref och skrifvelser (1912), vol. I:6, p. 232-233   p.232  p.233.