Rosemarie Tsubaki: Pehr Kalm, suomalainen Amerikan löytäjä [Pehr Kalm, the Finnish discoverer of America]

8 June 2012 | Mini reviews, Reviews

Pehr Kalm, suomalainen Amerikan löytäjä
[Pehr Kalm, the Finnish discoverer of America]
Alkuteos [original work, in Italian]: Il Viaggio di Pehr Kalm in Nord-America 1747–1751. Dissertation, University of Genoa, 2002/2003
Suomennos [Translated by]: Anto Leikola
Helsinki: Terra Cognita, 2011. 199 p., ill.
ISBN 978-952-5697-49-0
€ 25, paperback

The Finnish naturalist and pastor Pehr (in Finnish, Pietari) Kalm (1716–79), a pupil of the famous Swedish botanist Carl von Linné, was professor of economics and rector of Turku Academy, the only university in Finland during its period under Swedish rule. Kalm gained his international reputation as a result of his account of a scientific expedition he made to north America in 1747–51, which was translated into several languages. The trip was the first scientific expedition to the New World, and Kalm paid close attention to nature as well as the economics, living conditions and culture of both colonists and native inhabitants. One of his aims was the gathering of plants for use in Sweden. Of the plants he brought back a species of hawthorn, creeper vine and purple-flowered raspberry are still cultivated in Finland. The German scholar Rosemarie Tsubaki’s doctoral thesis examines Kalm’s writings and complements it with material from other sources where Kalm’s notes have been lost. The Finnish translation is furnished with an introduction and expertly translated by Anto Leikola, Professor Emeritus of History of Science.
Translated by David McDuff

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