Franz Wilhelm Junghuhn

Friedrich Franz Wilhelm Junghuhn (October 26, 1809 in Mansfeld, Germany – April 24, 1864 in Lembang, Bandung, West Java), was a German botanist. His father, Friedrich Junghuhn was a barber and a surgeon. His mother was Christine Marie Schiele. Junghuhn studied medicine in Halle and in Berlin from 1827 to 1831, meanwhile (1830) publishing a seminal paper on mushrooms in "Limnaea. Ein Journal für Botanik".

As a student Junghuhn was given to bouts of depression and he attempted suicide. He became involved in a 'matter of honor', and in the ensuing duel was himself hit, but perhaps unknown to him his opponent died of his wounds. Junghuhn fled by taking service in the Prussian army as a surgeon but was discovered and sentenced to ten years in prison. He feigned insanity, and was able to escape in the Autumn of 1833. He was briefly a member of the French Foreign Legion in North Africa but was dismissed on account of his poor health. At Paris, he sought out the famed Dutch botanist Christian Hendrik Persoon, who recommended that Junghuhn "enlist in the Dutch colonial army, and have yourself sent to the Dutch East Indies as a medical doctor". [J. P. Poley, "Eroica: The Quest for Oil in Indonesia (1850-1898)" (2000) p. 26.] Junghuhn did so, leaving Europe (Hellevoetsluis) in the early Summer of 1835, arriving in Jakarta (then called "Batavia") on October 13, 1835.

Junghuhn settled on Java, where he made an extensive study of the land and its people. He completed "Die Topographischen und Naturwissenschaftlichen Reisen durch Java" ("Topographic and Scientific Journeys in Java") in 1845 and "Die Bättalander auf Sumatra" ("Batak lands of Sumatra") in 1847. In 1849, ill health forced his return to Holland, where he married Johanna Louisa Frederika Koch on January 23, 1850, and had a son. While in Holland, Junghuhn began work on a four volume treatise, "Java, seine Gestalt, Pflanzendecke, und sein innerer Bau" ("Images of Light and Shadow from Java's interior") released anonymously between 1850 and 1854. The work was controversial, advocating socialism in the colonies and fiercely criticizing Christian and Islamic proselytization of the Javanese people. Junghuhn instead wrote of his preference for a form of Pandeism (pantheistic deism), contending that God was in everything, but could only be determined through reason. The work was banned in Austria and parts of Germany for its "denigrations and vilifications of Christianity", but was a strong seller in Holland where it was first published pseudonymously. It was also popular in colonial Indonesia, despite opposition from the Dutch Christian Church there. The publisher of the first volume, Jacobus Hazenberg, refused to continue his association with the work; the remaining four were published by the outspoken liberal, Frans Günst, from volume three as installments (from October 1, 1855) of the newly founded journal for freethinkers, "De Dageraad" (Dawn).

Recovered from his ills, Junghuhn returned to Java in 1855. Highly interested in botany and its practical applications, he (together with J.E. de Vrij of Bandung) became embroiled in a bitter and extended controversey with Johannes Teijsmann, hortulanus of 's Lands Plantentuin at Buitenzorg (now Bogor) and J.C. Hasskarl about the effectiveness of "Cinchona" species in the treatment of malaria. This controversy was conducted in public and in print with open letters to and demands on "Het Natuurkundig Genootschap"; part of this exchange of minds can be followed in "Natuurkundig Tijdschrift voor Nederlandsch Indië" from 1862 onwards. He remained on Java until his death from liver disease in 1864. On his deathbed, Junghung asked the doctor to open the windows, so he could say goodbye to the mountains that he loved. A minor item of trivia playing into discussions of Junghuhn is his surname, literally translated as "young chicken".

The plants "Cyathea junghuhniana" and "Nepenthes junghuhnii" are named after Franz Junghuhn.

References

External links

* [http://www.jakarta.diplo.de/Vertretung/jakarta/de/06/Bilaterale__Kulturbeziehungen/ddeu__spuren/galerie__junghuhn.html Biography (in German)]
* [http://www.iisg.nl/bwsa/bios/junghuhn.html Biography (in Dutch)]
*Book descriptions [http://www.abebooks.fr/servlet/BookDetailsPL?bi=572369350&searchurl=kn%3DSchaduwbeelden%26ph%3D2%26sortby%3D3] , [http://www.abebooks.fr/servlet/BookDetailsPL?bi=410087154&searchurl=kn%3DSchaduwbeelden%26ph%3D2%26sortby%3D3] , [http://www.abebooks.fr/servlet/BookDetailsPL?bi=111709634&searchurl=kn%3DSchaduwbeelden%26ph%3D2%26sortby%3D3] , [http://www.abebooks.fr/servlet/BookDetailsPL?bi=94051830&searchurl=kn%3DSchaduwbeelden%26ph%3D2%26sortby%3D3]


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  • Franz Wilhelm Junghuhn — Friedrich Franz Wilhelm Junghuhn est un botaniste néerlandais, né le 26 octobre 1809 à Mansfeld et mort le 24 avril 1864 à Lembang. Il fait ses études à Halle et à Berlin. Il officie comme chirurgien dans l’armée prussienne puis comme médecin… …   Wikipédia en Français

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