Schuh’s Annotated Bio-Bibliography

Return to main Biobliography page

RETZIUS, Anders Jahan.

(1742 – 1821)

(Born: Christianstad, Sweden, 3 October 1742; Died: Stockholm, Sweden, 6 October 1821) Swedish chemist.

From 1764, he was a chemical demonstrator at the University in Lund. In 1768 he left for Stockholm. While there he became a close friend and confidant of the great chemist, Carl Wilhelm Scheele [1742-1786]. He returned to Lund in 1772, however. In 1798, Retzius was appointed professor of chemistry in the Carolinan Institute in Stockholm. He assembled an important collection of minerals and rocks for the University of Lund. He published numerous articles and books on a number of subjects including chemistry, botany, zoology, mineralogy and paleontology. The botanical species "Retzia" is named after him.

Biographical references: Kongl. Svenska Vetenskaps Academiens Handlingar: 1822, 462-7, biblio.. Partington, History of Chemistry, 1961-70: 3, 200. Poggendorff: 2, cols. 610-1 & 1438. SBA: Scandinavian Biographical Archive: B-260, 117-134. Svenskt Biografiskt Lexikon: 30, 1. WBI.

1. Latin, 1791 [Dissertation].
Specimen academicum de zeolithis svecicis, quod ... sub præsidio ... Andr. J. Retzii ... examini ... subjicit auctor Franciscus Henrik. Müller .. Lundæ, typis Berlingianis, [1791].

4°: 40 p.

Rare. Disseration on something paleontological in Sweden. Respondent was Franz Heinrich Müller [1769-1794].

Bibliographical references: Beckmann P.Ö.B.: 17, 270. BL [RB.23.a.10225]. Gatterer, Mineralogischen Literatur, 1798-9: 1, 170. LKG: XVI 451.

Försök til Mineral-Rikets, 1795

2. Swedish, 1795 [First edition].
Försök | Til | Mineral-Rikets | Upstållning. | I | En Handbok | At Nyttja Vid Förelåsningar | Af | Anders Jahan Retzius, | [...10 lines of titles and memberships...] | [ornate rule] | Lund, 1795, | Tryckt Uti Berlingska Boktryckeriet.

8°: π2 A-X8 Y2; 189l.; [4], [1]-374 p. Page size: 180 x 115 mm. uncut.

Contents: [2 pgs], Title page, verso quotation signed Linné.; [1 pg], Dedication to Carl Axel Wachtmeister.; [1 pg], Three lines of quotation signed Linné.; [1]-28, Introduction.; 29-35, "Mineraliernes Indelning." [=synopsis of classification].; 36-358, Text.; [359]-374, "Bihang."

Very scarce. In this handbook of mineral classification, Retzius' bases his scheme on that of Axel Frederich Cronstedt first presented in Försök til Mineralogie (1st ed., Stockholm, 1758). The introduction discusses reason why minerals need to be classified and why Cronstedt's method is the best way. A synopsis of the overall classification is then presented followed by a more detailed descriptive mineralogy with the species arranged according to the system. An appendix at the end describes the latest discoveries of mineralogy.

Bibliographical references: Ferchl: 440. LKG: XII 143. Roller & Goodman, Catalogue, 1976: 2, 354.

3. German, 1798 [German transl.].
Versuch einer Aufstellung des Mineralreichs von Andreas Johann Retzius. Ein Handbuch zum Gebrauche bei Vorlesungen von A.J. Retzius. Aus dem Schwedischen übersetzt von Carl Asmund Rudolpli. Leipzig, S.L. Crusius, 1798.

8°: iv, 376 p.

Rare. Translation by Carl Asmund Rudolpli [1771-1832] of Försök til Mineral-Rikets Upstållning (Lund, 1795).

Bibliographical references: BL [970.i.12.]. LKG: XII 144a.

4. Latin, 1796 [Dissertation].
D.D. | Dissertatio Gradualis | De | Methodo Optima | In | Mineralogia, | [rule] | Quam, | Venia Amplissimæ Faculatis Philosophicæ | sur Præsidio | D.M. Andr. J. Retzii, | [...6 lines of titles and memberships...] | Publico Examini modeste Subjieit | Daniel Kullberg, | Gothoburgensis. | In Lycea Carolino die XXII Aprilis A MDCCXCVI. | [rule] | Lundæ, | Typis Berlingianis.

4°: A4 b5; 9l.; [1]-17, [1] p.

Contents: [1-2], Title page, verso blank.; 3-17, Text.; [1 pg], Blank.

Very scarce. This dissertation describes the Retzius' views on a optimal classification methodology in mineralogy. It was presented by Daniel Kullberg as respondent.

Bibliographical references: BL [B.228.(1.)]. Hoover Collection: no. 496. LKG: XII 145b.

5. Latin, 1799 [Dissertation].
Dissertatio gradualis sistens observationes nonnullas de lapide Obsidiano ... Londini Gothorum, Litteris Berlingianis, [1799].

4°: [2], 19 p.

Very scarce. Dissertation on obsidian. Respondent, Johann Jakob Palm [1750-1825].

Bibliographical references: Hoover Collection: no. 622. LKG: XVI 363.