Some Biogeographers, Evolutionists and Ecologists:
Chrono-Biographical Sketches

Kerner von Marilaun, Anton Joseph (Austria 1831-1898)
botany, systematics, ecology

Kerner von Marilaun's work was well known to both Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace, who refer to him in their writings. Kerner was in a good position to develop natural history studies, as for most of his professional life he held positions both as director of a botanical garden and as a university professor. He was known especially as an outstanding expert on alpine floras; further, he did important experimental work in an alpine setting when he transported a number of species cultivated in Vienna to high altitudes nearby to examine any changes that might take place, and whether these changes would prove hereditarily transmissible. Changes in form and life cycle were in fact observed, but only remained if the plants were kept at the high altitude location: thus, the environment appeared to be responsible. Kerner's work extended to efforts in regional floristics, systematic botany, and popular writing.

Life Chronology

--born in Mautern an der Donau, Lower Austria, on 12 November 1831.
--1848-1853: studies medicine at the University of Vienna
--1854: M.D., University of Vienna
--1855: sits for the teacher's examination in chemistry and natural history
--1855-1858: teaches secondary school in Budapest
--1858-1860: professor of natural history at the Municipal Polytechnic
--1860: made professor of natural history and director of the botanical gardens and museum of natural history at the University of Innsbruck
--1863: publishes his Das Pflanzenleben der Donaulaender
--1878-1898: professor of systemic botany and director of the Vienna botanical gardens
--1890-1891: publishes his Pflanzenleben, in two volumes
--1877: knighted
--1878: publishes his Flowers and Their Unbidden Guests
--1895-1896: publishes his The Natural History of Plants, Their Forms, Growth, Reproduction, and Distribution, in two volumes (English translation of Pflanzenleben)
--dies at Vienna, Austria, on 21 June 1898.

For Additional Information, See:

--Taxonomic Literature, Vol. 2 (1979)
--Anton Kerner von Merilaun, 1831-1898 (2004). [in German]
--Nature, Vol. 58 (1898): 251-252.

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Copyright 2005 by Charles H. Smith. All rights reserved.

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