HUMBOLDT, Alexander von. 14.9.1769 — 6.5.1859. German Geographer and Explorer. Younger brother of —> W. von H. Started his career as a law student at Frankfurt a.d.O., but after obtaining a large inheritance in 1797 devoted himself to natural sciences, studying at Göttingen. With Bonpland he made a famous journey of exploration to South America (Venezuela, Columbia and Mexico) in 1799-1804. Lived then long time in Paris (until 1827). In 1829 explored the Ural, Altai, Dzungaria and Caspian. He was a pioneer of modern meteorology, but also interested in archaeology and cultural history.
Publications: with others: Voyages aux régions équinoxiales du Nouveau continent fait en 1799-1804. 1-30. 1805-34; several works on geography, meteorology and natular sciences.
– Kosmos. Entwurf einer physischen Weltbeschreibung. 1-4. St. & Tübingen 1845-58 (2. Asia 1847).
– many further works.
Sources: Iso tietosanakirja 4; *A.Dove, ADB 13, 1881, 358-383; *E. Plewe, NDB 10, 1974, 33-43; Wikipedia with several portraits, a photo and further references (and more in German version) including complete biographies.
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