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Link: • Carl Linnaeus to Gustav III, c. 1770 n.s.
Dated . Sent from Uppsala (Sweden) to Stockholm (Sweden). Written in Swedish.


Linnaeus writes to Gustav IIIGustav III, (1746-1792).
Swedish. Reigned 1771-1792. Son of King
Adolf Fredrik and Queen Lovisa Ulrika,
brother of Sofia Albertina and Karl
XIII. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
[as Linnaeus refers to Gustavís duties and obligations as a Chancellor, a position he had until 1771, see below, the letter must have been written when Gustav was still Crown-Prince] that Louis Jean Marie DaubentonísDaubenton, Louis Jean Marie
(1716-1800). French. Curator at Jardin
des plantes in Paris. Professor of
mineralogy. Correspondent of Linnaeus.
book of drawings of birds in living colours is a wonderful work, and because it contains so many foreign birds it must be regarded a masterpiece [Daubenton assisted Jean-Louis Leclerc, comte de BuffonBuffon, Jean-Louis Leclerc, comte de
(1707-1788). French.
with his Histoire naturelleBuffon, Jean-Louis Leclerc, comte de
Histoire naturelle
générale et
particulière avec la description
du cabinet du roi
, 44 vol. (Paris,
, vol. I, when the part where the birds were described, was published in 1770, Daubenton had already left the project].

Prince Fredrik AdolfFredrik Adolf, Prince of Sweden
(1750-1803). Swedish. Son of King Adolf
Fredrik and Queen Lovisa Ulrika, brother
of Gustav III.
graciously donated the first volume to Linnaeus.

Linnaeus writes that he had wanted to cite Daubentonís figures in Systema natura [Linnaesu refers presumably to the Systema naturae, 12th edition Linnaeus, Carl Systema
, 12th edition (Stockholm
1766-1768). Soulsby no. 62.
], which is now the foremost work in that branch of science, but was unable to find them in the library and Linnaeus was only able to cite the first.

Linnaeus notes that 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.
] has the two later volumes in the Royal Library but Linnaeus dares not ask for the loan of them, and to examine them at the Drottningholm Palace would be insufficient, as Linnaeus would need access to all the other authors if he is to be able to extract names and quotations.

Linnaeus therefore respectfully requests of Gustav III, not only as monarch but also as Chancellor of the Uppsala University, and thus promoter of the sciences, to order the library to make the necessary purchases unless other means can be suggested.


a. original holograph (UUB, F466). [1]


1. Bref och skrifvelser (1912), vol. I:6, p. 226-227   p.226  p.227.