Prussian scientist Baron Alexander von Humboldt explained aurora borealis and founded modern bio-geography. Less known however, is Humboldt's adventure to Spain's American colonies for what would become the greatest botanical expedition of all time. Now, at the 150th anniversary of Humboldt's death, the beautiful hardcover, "Alexander von Humboldt and the Botanical Exploration of the Americas," collects all primary records of his findings.
Humboldt, together with his associates Bonpland and Kunth, roamed the most diverse regions of the new American colonies. They preserved specimens with careful illustrations, all of which are re-printed on eighty-two color plates. But these images aren't just scientific sketches, they're nothing short of botanical masterpieces. Humboldt's enthusiasm for the plant kingdom comes through in his diary, much of which has been published to compliment the rich illustrations and photographs.
Baron Alexander von Humboldt was documenting trends in biological diversity before Charles Darwin crystallized the concept of genes. Darwin said of Humboldt, "I have always admired him; now I worship him." It's too bad that Darwin can't get a hold of this new book, available from the Amazon.
For more gorgeous images, visit after the jump.