GIESECKE, Karl Ludwig.
(1761 – 1833)
Born the son of a craftsman, Giesecke studied for a time in Göttingen, but moved to Vienna and from 1790 to 1804 became a playwright and actor. He is thought by some to be the librettist behind Mozart's last opera, "Die Zauberflöte" (The Magic Flute). He traveled to Copenhagen, and established himself has a mineral dealer. From 1806 to 1813, he explored Greenland collecting minerals, and on his return went to Dublin where he was soon appointed professor of mineralogy at the Royal Academy in Dublin.
Biographical references: ADB. Annalen der Physik: 62 (1833), 180. Catalogue of Portraits of Naturalists: 478 [2 portraits listed]. DBA: I 391, 61-67. Garboe, Geologiens Historie i Danmark, 1959-61: 1, 198-200, portrait. Philosophical Magazine, 1st Series: 4 (1834), ??. Poggendorff: 1, cols. 894-5. Rasmussen, Geologiska Litteratur Færøerne, 1947. Sarjeant, Geologists, 1980: 2, 1091 & Suppl. 2 (1996), 1, 650. WBI. Wilson, History of Mineral Collecting, 1994: 172. Wurzbach, Biographisches Lexikon Österreich, 1856-91.
1. English, 1832.
A | Descriptive Catalogue | Of | A New Collection Of Minerals | In The | Museum | Of The | Royal Dublin Society. | To Which Is Added | An Irish Mineralogy. | [rule] | By | Sir Charles Lewis Giesecke, | [...8 lines of titles and memberships...] | [rule] | Dublin: | R. Graisberry, | Printer To The Royal Dublin Society. | [short rule] | 1832.
8° in 4s: π4 B-Z4 2A-2K4 2L2; 134l.; [i]-iv, -268 p.
Contents: [i-ii], Title page, verso blank.; [iii]-iv, Dedication to The Royal Dublin Society, signed Charles Lewis Giesecke, 1 March 1832.; -199, "Systematic Collection | Of | Minerals."; , Blank.; , Sectional title page, "An | Irish | Mineralogy; | or, | A List | Of | Simple Mineral Substances | Hitherto Discovered In Ireland. | [rule] | Dublin: | R. Graisberry, | Printer To The Royal Dublin Society. | [rule] | 1832."; , Blank.; -253, "An | Irish Mineralogy, | &c.&c."; , Blank.; -268, "Tablular View | Of | The System."
Very scarce. The dedication praises the Royal Dublin Society for allowing Giesecke the opportunity to prepare this catalog of the society's mineral collection. The system chosen for arranging the species is based upon external characters. With the addition of a separate tract on Irish mineralogy that lists those minerals that had so far been discovered in Ireland, it is clear that this Catalogue was also intended to help promote the study of mineralogy in the country. The collection was merged with the museums of natural history and industry in 1877 to form the present day National Museum of Ireland.
Bibliographical references: BL [no copy listed]. Burchard, Mineral Museums, 1986: 137.
2. Danish, 1878 [First edition].
Gieseckes mineralogiske Rejse i Grønland ved F. Johnstrup. Med et Tillæg om de grønlandske Stednavnes Retskrivning og Etymologi af H. Rink. Hermed 3 Kaart. Kjøbenhavn 1878.
8°: xxvii, 20 p. Very scarce.
3. Danish, 1910 [2nd edition].
Mineralogische Reisejournal fiber Grönland 1806-13. 2te,vollst.Ausg. Koph., 1910.
8°: xxxvii, 532 p., 4 plates. [Published as: Medd. 0 Grønl. Bd.35.] Very scarce..