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Link: • Carl Peter Thunberg to Carl Linnaeus, [30 May 1774] n.s.
Dated . Sent from Cape Town (South Africa) to Uppsala (Sweden). Written in Swedish.


Carl Peter ThunbergThunberg, Carl Peter
(1743-1828). Swedish. Botanist,
physician, explorer. Professor of
medicine and botany at Uppsala. Studied
medicine under Linnaeus in Uppsala,
medicine and surgery in Paris, natural
history under Johannes Burman in
Amsterdam. Travelled in South Africa in
1772-1775, in Japan 1775-1776, Java and
Ceylon in 1777-1778. Correspondent of
is very happy to report that he recently received four letters from Linnaeus [presumably Linnaeus to Thunberg, 10 November 1771Letter L5942, 17 June 1773Letter L4857, 15 October 1773Letter L4949 and 29 October 1773Letter L4906]. Some letters were sent from Holland and some were brought by Carl Gustaf EkebergEkeberg, Carl Gustaf
(1716-1784). Swedish. Captain, employed
by the Swedish East India Company.
. One letter had been on its way for 16 months! Thunberg’s dearest wish is that the parcels sent this year to Linnaeus will arrive safely. He cannot understand why some of the consignments have not arrived yet, e.g. one containing the new genus Linnaeus saw at Abraham Bäck’sBäck, Abraham (1713-1795).
Swedish. Physician, president of the
Collegium Medicum, Stockholm. Close
friend of Linnaeus. Correspondent of
. A Thunbergia, together with a description, was sent to Lars MontinMontin, Lars (1723-1785).
Swedish. Physician and botanist. Studied
medicine in Uppsala under Linnaeus and
Nils Rosén von Rosenstein.
Provincial physician of the province of
Halland. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
who was instructed to forward an example of the flower to Linnaeus.

In his letters Linnaeus asks many questions. Time does not allow Thunberg to answer them all now but he comments on the following plants:

Anthericum speciosum
Mansonia speciosa
Cycas caffra, a description of it has been sent to Montin.
Hermannia and Mahernia
Cyphiae Bergii
Helonias viridis
Asparagus and Dragaena
Fabricia (Stellina) and Hypoxis
Syphilos. Thunberg is sending a description of it.
Campanulae and Roellae

Thunberg is enclosing a new plant named Aitonia asphadeloides with a description of it and two species of Masonia.

Thunberg is very grateful for Linnaeus’s promise to give him specimens of his surplus stock. Nothing is dearer to Thunberg than plants and insects.

As he intends to stay in the Cape until the next February or March, there will be time for him to send more letters and plants to Linnaeus.


a. original holograph (LS, XV, 296-297). [1] [2] [3]