Fear of Forests

Linnaeus is called the Flower King, the man who became universally known for his systematization of botany. It is easy to forget that his immense contribution to the nomenclature and order of known biological data embraced the whole of creation, right down to the world of inorganic minerals. Nature’s system, which he attempted to survey and describe, comprised the animal kingdom (fauna), and there we are, among the mammals, along with apes and others. The species Homo sapiens made its entry into the textbook of natural science. Linnaeus had a keen eye for abnormalities, variations, and metamorphoses, all of which never ceased to astonish him. Darwin, who stood in close touch with the Linnean Society of London, took this pioneer to his heart and studied him diligently.

For Linnaeus, the graduate in medicine, man was the primary object of study. The major part of his life’s work may be described as that field of research which comprises all others: the stu...

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