Karl Eichwald

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Karl Eichwald
Karl Eduard von Eichwald.gif
Karl Eichwald
Born4 July 1795
Jelgava (German: Mitau), present-day Latvia
Died10 November 1876 (1876-11-11) (aged 81)
NationalityBaltic German
CitizenshipRussian Empire
Scientific career

Karl Eduard von Eichwald (4 July 1795, in Mitau, Courland Governorate – 10 November 1876, in Saint Petersburg; Russian: Эдуард Иванович Эйхвальд, Eduard Ivanovich Eykhval'd) was a Baltic German geologist, physician, and naturalist, who worked in Russia.


Eichwald was a Baltic German born at Mitau in Courland Governorate. He became doctor of medicine and professor of zoology in Kazan in 1823; four years later professor of zoology and comparative anatomy at Vilnius; in 1838 professor of zoology, mineralogy and medicine at St. Petersburg; and finally professor of palaeontology in the institute of mines in that city.

He travelled much in the Russian empire, and was a keen observer of its natural history and geology. He died at St. Petersburg.

Eichwald was a supporter of Darwinism.[1]


His published works include Reise auf dem Caspischen Meere und in den Caucasus, 2 vols. (Stuttgart and Tübingen, 1834-1838); Die Urwelt Russlands (St Petersburg, 1840-1845); Le Lethaea Rossica, ou Paléontologie de la Russie, 3 vols. (Stuttgart, 1852-1868), with Atlases.

In the scientific field of herpetology he described several new species of reptiles.[2]

His work is not devoid of serious shortcomings, dependent in part on the nature of the compiler. In old age, few self-confident scientists are willing to admit their mistakes. Part of the errors were because of low-quality material, which had been gathered for him by often inexperienced or illiterate people. Therefore, the conclusions are not always trustworthy.

See also


  1. ^ Corsi, Pietro. (2005). Before Darwin: Transformist Concepts in European Natural History. Journal of the History of Biology 38: 67-83.
  2. ^ The Reptile Database. www.reptile-database.org.
  3. ^ IPNI.  Eichw.


External links