Juan Eusebio Nieremberg, Historia naturae

Juan Eusebio Nieremberg (1595–1658).
Historia naturae, maxime peregrinae, libris
Antwerp: Plantin Office (Balthasar Moretus), 1635. (BRC0011)

A Jesuit theologian, Nieremberg taught humanities, natural history, and scripture at the Colegio Imperial in Madrid. Approximately eighty separate works are attributed to him, primarily in the areas of religion and philosophy. His Historia naturae, which focuses largely on the natural history of Mexico, was compiled primarily from research conducted in New Spain in the 1570s by the Spanish physician naturalist Francisco Hernández (1515–1587). The sixteenth-century scientist’s research results comprised six folio text volumes containing over three thousand plants, animals, and minerals and ten folio volumes of paintings by Mexican artists illustrating the plants and animals described in the text. Although Hernández died before he could publish his natural history, the volumes were stored in the Escorial where the information and images were consulted, copied, and adapted by generations of scholars before the materials were destroyed by fire in 1671. The woodcut illustrations in the 1635 Historia naturae are supposedly based in part on the images from the Hernández expedition.

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Natural History
Juan Eusebio Nieremberg, Historia naturae