Schuh’s Annotated Bio-Bibliography

ABILDGAARD, Peder Christian.

(1740 – 1801)


(Born: Copenhagen, Denmark, December 22, 1740; Died: Copenhagen, Denmark, January 11, 1801) Danish physician & naturalist.

Abildgaard was the son of Søren [see next entry]. He was educated at the Veterinarian School in Lyon. He authored many works on medicine, zoology, etc., and gave in 1796 a description of the Megatherium at the same time as Georges Cuvier. Abildgaard was a secretary of the Academy of Sciences, Copenhagen, and he founded and directed the Veterinary School of Copenhagen. In mineralogy he was the first to examine and report on the mineral species Cryolite found in Greenland.

Biographical references: Dansk Biografisk Haandleksikon: 1, 8, portrait. Garboe, Geologiens Historie i Danmark, 1959-61: 1, 157-162, portrait. Poggendorff: 1, col. 5 & 1525. Thomas, Dictionary of Biography, 1884: 35. World Who’s Who in Science: 5.

1. German, 1801 [First separate issue].
Ueber Norwegische Titanerze und eine neue Steinart (Kryolith) aus Grönland, welche aus Flusspathsaure und Alaunerde besteht. Aus dem Dänischen übersetzt von Moritz Heinrich Mendel. Copenhagen, 1801.

8°: 10 p.

Very rare. First separate appearance in German translation by Moritz Heinrich Mendel [see note below] of the article “Om Norske Titanertser och om en nye Steenart Kryolith fra Grønland, som bestaar af Flusspatsyre og Alunjord” (see: Videnskabernes Selskabs Skrifter (Danske), 3 (1800), 305-316). The text describes two mineral species: (1) sphene crystals found in Norway, and (2) the new mineral species cryolite found in Ivigtut, Greenland. Abildgaard was the first researcher to examine the mineral samples brought back from Greenland by Andrade and named the new species he discovered Kryolith or Iissteen (from the Greek κρυοσ meaning ice). Abildgaard performed chemical analysis of the minerals and found that cryolite contained aluminum and hydrofluoric acid.

Moritz Heinrich Mendel. (Born: Breslau, Germany, 1777; Died: Breslau, Germany, December 3, 1813) German physician. Mendel received his medical degree in 1811, and he was named professor of the new University in Breslau. He became director of the cities medical clinic and was named an advisor on medical subjects. However, his life was cut short when while fighting an outbreak of typhus, he contracted the disease.

Bibliographical references: BL [RB .23.a.15024]. Freiesleben, Uebersicht der Litteratur, 1822: p. 146. Garboe, Geologiens Historie i Danmark, 1959-61: 1, 159-60. Hlawatsch, Bibliothekskatalog, 1911: p. 1. LKG: XIV 714. NUC [no copy listed]. Partington, History of Chemistry, 1961-70: 3, 554. Partsch, Katalog der Bibliothek, 1851: no. 417. (Mendel) Hamberger & Meusel, Gelehrte Teutschland, 1796-1834. Hirsch, Biographisches Lexikon, 1884-8: 4, 203. Jöcher, Gelehrten-Lexikon, 1750-51. Meusel, Verstorbenen Teutschen Schrifsteller, 1802-16: 14, 544 & 18, 672. WBI.