ETHNOBOTANY


The exchange of plant knowledge is a fundamental pillar of the LINNÉ mission, and our commitment to sharing such knowledge is an homage to our namesake Carl Von Linné.

Beyond establishing binomial nomenclature and the system of taxonomy, Swedish botanist, Carl Von Linné, published over 170 important scientific works in his lifetime. As a professor at Uppsala University, his popularity as a teacher was unprecedented. Though focused on teaching, plant studies, and the restoration of the university’s botanical garden, he additionally practiced medicine and was no less than the appointed physician to the Swedish Royal Family.

Perhaps most inspiring, was his passion and reverence for ‘ethnobotany’. Although the term 'ethnobotany' was not coined until 1895, it is proposed that Linné was the first to practice this relatively new science. On his first expedition, in the spring of 1732, at 25 years old, the Academy of Science elected him to go on an exploration of Lapland and record any new plants he found there. He travelled light and lived with the people he met and adopted their clothing. He returned to Sweden with over one hundred dried and pressed specimens that were new to science, and continued to dress in his Saami clothes (complete with talismans and Shaman's drum). To this day, the work of Carl Von Linné has greatly influenced the world of botany and medicine; and this spirit and passion lives on within LINNÉ.

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