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Link: • Carl Linnaeus to Erik Gustaf Lidbeck, 3 October 1769 n.s.
Dated . Sent from () to (). Written in .


Linnaeus gives Erik Gustaf LidbeckLidbeck, Erik Gustaf
(1724-1803). Swedish. Professor of
natural history and economy at Lund.
Studied under Linnaeus. Accompanied
Linnaeus as secretary on his
Västgöta journey in 1746.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
the title of Franz Michael Regenfuss’sRegenfuss, Franz Michael
(1713-1780). German. Engraver and
art-dealer. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
publication on crustaceans in French and German [Linnaeus refers to Choix de coquillages et de crustacésRegenfuss, Franz Michael
Choix de coquillages et de
crustacés peints d'après
nature, gravés, en taille douce
et illuminés de leurs vraïes
(Copenhagen 1758).
] but adds that if Lidbeck just asks for Regenfuss’s work on shellfish, published in imperial size at the expense of the King of Denmark [Fredrik VFredrik V, (1723-1766).
Danish. Reigned Denmark and Norway
], he will have them immediately. It contains twelve coloured plates.

Two descriptions in German and in French have been issued with these plates.

One of the descriptions was done by Christian Gottlieb KratzensteinKratzenstein, Christian Gottlieb
(1723-1795). Danish. Physician and
physicist. Professor in Halle, from 1754
professor of experimental physics at
Copenhagen. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
, but that was not approved, although it must be as good as the second one. The other is by somebody called Sprengler [Lorenz Spengler Spengler, Lorenz (1720-1807).
Swiss. Swiss-born zoologist, who moved
to Copenhagen, Denmark in 1743.
Correspondent of Linnaeus.
] and a theologian, and it is rather good also. However, Linnaeus wonders why Lidbeck must buy that expensive work with its few tables, albeit beautiful ones, when he can buy Nicola Gualtieri’sGualtieri, Nicola (1688-1744).
Italian. Doctor of medicine, physician
at Pisa.
work “De testacies” [Linnaeus refers to Index testarum conchyliorumGualtieri, Nicola Index
testarum conchyliorum, quae adservantur
in museo Nicolai Gualtieri
] , which contains many more pictures, more clearly and more recently drawn.

When Lidbeck get the plates, it does not matter which of the descriptions Lidbeck get with them. Kratzenstein says that Spengler is not without mistakes, but can he be sure that he is correct? Nobody is without fault in this world.

Linnaeus has both descriptions. He got the first one before it was cancelled by the Danish King, and the second one directly from the Danish Court. Linnaeus has only seen twelve plates by Regenfuss.

Regenfuss designed a title page himself for his plates, when they were first issued, but Linnaeus discarded it when the book was bound. Linnaeus wonders why one book should have so many titles.


a. original holograph (LUB).