Sunday, January 17, 2010

Born This Day: Gaspard Bauhin

From Today In Science History:

Bauhin (Jan. 17, 1560 - Dec. 5, 1624) was a Swiss physician, anatomist, and botanist who introduced a scientific binomial system of classification to both anatomy and botany. In 1623 Bauhin produced the Pinax Theatri Botanici, the first attempt to summarize a confusing array of names. It was a monumental compilation that pulled together uncoordinated plant names and descriptions of 6000 species that had appeared in Theophrastus and Dioscorides, as well as in later herbals and other plant records.

By accepting Bauhin's compilation, Linnaeus was able to avoid many of the complications of the ancient literature.