Some Biogeographers, Evolutionists and Ecologists:
Chrono-Biographical Sketches

Weber, Max Wilhelm Carl (Germany-Netherlands 1852-1937)
zoology, field biology

Not to be confused with his more famous namesake, the sociologist, Max Weber the zoologist forged a considerable reputation for himself as an expedition organizer and descriptive biologist. Weber's great skill as a comparative morphologist was well-served by his associations with the zoological garden and museum in Amsterdam, as he was thus able to secure a regular stream of deceased exotic specimens for examination. At the same time, he was an outstanding field biologist and collector, and is still remembered for his productive expeditions to the Dutch East Indies. During these he developed well-thought out ideas on the region's biogeography, taking an especial interest in the unusual circumstances of the great island of Sulawesi (Celebes). Weber's most important publication, 1904's Die Säugetiere, remained a standard text on the systematics and anatomy of mammals through much of the twentieth century; he also left behind an enviable legacy as a model teacher and professional scientist.

Life Chronology

--born in Bonn, Germany, on 5 December 1852.
--1873: begins studies in natural history at the University of Bonn
--1875-1876: studies with zoologist Eduard von Martens in Berlin
--1877: Ph.D., University of Bonn
--1878: passes his medical qualifying exam; serves a year in the military
--1879: made lecturer in anatomy at the University of Utrecht
--1881: joins a collecting expedition to the Barents Sea
--1883: made professor extraordinary in zoology, comparative anatomy, and comparative physiology at the University of Amsterdam
--1884: made professor ordinary in zoology, comparative anatomy, and comparative physiology at the University of Amsterdam
--1886: part one of his Studien über Säugethiere is published
--1888: travels in the Dutch East Indies, collecting zoological and ethnological materials
--1890-1907: publishes items serially in the Zoologische Ergebnisse einer Reise nach Niederländisch Ost-Indien series, four volumes in total
--1892: appointed first director of the Zoological Museum in Amsterdam
--1898: part two of his Studien über Säugethiere is published
--1899: leaves his professor ordinary position; re-appointed professor extraordinary
--1899-1900: leads the Siboga expedition to the Dutch East Indies
--1904: publishes his Die Säugetiere
--1935: elected a foreign member of the Royal Society of London
--dies at Eerbank, Netherlands, on 7 February 1937.

For Additional Information, See:

--Dictionary of Scientific Biography, Vol. 14 (1976).
--Obituary Notices of Fellows of the Royal Society, Vol. 2 (1938): 347-355.
--Bijdragen tot de Dierkunde, Vol. 62(4) (1993): 193-214.

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

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