59 Facts About Ernst Haeckel


Ernst Haeckel discovered, described and named thousands of new species, mapped a genealogical tree relating all life forms and coined many terms in biology, including ecology, phylum, phylogeny, and Protista.


The published artwork of Ernst Haeckel includes over 100 detailed, multi-colour illustrations of animals and sea creatures, collected in his Kunstformen der Natur, a book which would go on to influence the Art Nouveau artistic movement.


Ernst Haeckel was a promoter of scientific racism and embraced the idea of Social Darwinism.


Ernst Haeckel was the first person to characterize the Great War the "first" World War which he did already in 1914.


Ernst Haeckel was born on 16 February 1834, in Potsdam.


In 1852 Ernst Haeckel completed studies at the Domgymnasium, the cathedral high-school of Merseburg.


Ernst Haeckel then studied medicine in Berlin and Wurzburg, particularly with Albert von Kolliker, Franz Leydig, Rudolf Virchow, and with the anatomist-physiologist Johannes Peter Muller.


In 1857 Ernst Haeckel attained a doctorate in medicine, and afterwards he received the license to practice medicine.


Ernst Haeckel studied under Karl Gegenbaur at the University of Jena for three years, earning a habilitation in comparative anatomy in 1861, before becoming a professor of zoology at the University at Jena, where he remained for 47 years, from 1862 to 1909.


Between 1859 and 1866 Ernst Haeckel worked on many phyla, such as radiolarians, poriferans and annelids.


Ernst Haeckel dedicated some species of jellyfish that he found beautiful to her.


From 1866 to 1867 Ernst Haeckel made an extended journey to the Canary Islands with Hermann Fol.


Ernst Haeckel retired from teaching in 1909, and in 1910 he withdrew from the Evangelical Church of Prussia.


Ernst Haeckel sold his "Villa Medusa" in Jena in 1918 to the Carl Zeiss foundation, which preserved his library.


Ernst Haeckel became the most famous proponent of Monism in Germany.


Rather than being a strict Darwinian, Ernst Haeckel believed that the characteristics of an organism were acquired through interactions with the environment and that ontogeny reflected phylogeny.


Ernst Haeckel saw the social sciences as instances of "applied biology", and that phrase was picked up and used for Nazi propaganda.


In 1906 Ernst Haeckel belonged to the founders of the Monist League, which took a stance against philosophical materialism and promote a "natural Weltanschauung".


However, Ernst Haeckel's books were banned by the Nazi Party, which refused Monism and Ernst Haeckel's freedom of thought.


Ernst Haeckel was a zoologist, an accomplished artist and illustrator, and later a professor of comparative anatomy.


For example, Ernst Haeckel described and named hypothetical ancestral microorganisms that have never been found.


Ernst Haeckel was one of the first to consider psychology as a branch of physiology.


Ernst Haeckel did not support natural selection, rather believing in Lamarckism.


Ernst Haeckel supported the theory with embryo drawings that have since been shown to be oversimplified and in part inaccurate, and the theory is considered an oversimplification of quite complicated relationships, however comparison of embryos remains a powerful way to demonstrate that all animals are related.


Ernst Haeckel introduced the concept of heterochrony, the change in timing of embryonic development over the course of evolution.


Ernst Haeckel was a flamboyant figure, who sometimes took great, non-scientific leaps from available evidence.


For example, at the time when Darwin published On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, Ernst Haeckel postulated that evidence of human evolution would be found in the Dutch East Indies.


Ernst Haeckel described these theoretical remains in great detail and even named the as-yet unfound species, Pithecanthropus alalus, and instructed his students such as Richard and Oskar Hertwig to go and find it.


From this, Ernst Haeckel drew the implication that languages with the most potential yield the human races with the most potential, led by the Semitic and Indo-Germanic groups, with Berber, Jewish, Greco-Roman and Germanic varieties to the fore.


Ernst Haeckel applied the hypothesis of polygenism to the modern diversity of human groups.


Ernst Haeckel became a key figure in social darwinism and leading proponent of scientific racism, stating for instance:.


Ernst Haeckel divided human beings into ten races, of which the Caucasian was the highest and the primitives were doomed to extinction.


Ernst Haeckel claimed the origin of humanity was to be found in Asia: he believed that Hindustan was the actual location where the first humans had evolved.


Ernst Haeckel argued that humans were closely related to the primates of Southeast Asia and rejected Darwin's hypothesis of Africa.


Ernst Haeckel later claimed that the missing link was to be found on the lost continent of Lemuria located in the Indian Ocean.


Ernst Haeckel believed that Lemuria was the home of the first humans and that Asia was the home of many of the earliest primates; he thus supported that Asia was the cradle of hominid evolution.


Ernst Haeckel claimed that Lemuria connected Asia and Africa, which allowed the migration of humans to the rest of the world.


When Ernst Haeckel was a student in the 1850s he showed great interest in embryology, attending the rather unpopular lectures twice and in his notes sketched the visual aids: textbooks had few illustrations, and large format plates were used to show students how to see the tiny forms under a reflecting microscope, with the translucent tissues seen against a black background.


Ernst Haeckel disregarded such caution, and in a year wrote his massive and ambitious Generelle Morphologie, published in 1866, presenting a revolutionary new synthesis of Darwin's ideas with the German tradition of Naturphilosophie going back to Goethe and with the progressive evolutionism of Lamarck in what he called Darwinismus.


Ernst Haeckel used morphology to reconstruct the evolutionary history of life, in the absence of fossil evidence using embryology as evidence of ancestral relationships.


Ernst Haeckel invented new terms, including ontogeny and phylogeny, to present his evolutionised recapitulation theory that "ontogeny recapitulated phylogeny".


Ernst Haeckel's publisher turned down a proposal for a "strictly scholarly and objective" second edition.


Ernst Haeckel's aim was a reformed morphology with evolution as the organising principle of a cosmic synthesis unifying science, religion, and art.


Ernst Haeckel was giving successful "popular lectures" on his ideas to students and townspeople in Jena, in an approach pioneered by his teacher Rudolf Virchow.


Ernst Haeckel believed privately that his figures were both exact and synthetic, and in public asserted that they were schematic like most figures used in teaching.


Ernst Haeckel accused Haeckel of "playing fast and loose with the public and with science", and failing to live up to the obligation to the truth of every serious researcher.


Ernst Haeckel responded with angry accusations of bowing to religious prejudice, but in the second edition changed the duplicated embryo images to a single image captioned "embryo of a mammal or bird".


Later in 1874, Ernst Haeckel's simplified embryology textbook Anthropogenie made the subject into a battleground over Darwinism aligned with Bismarck's Kulturkampf against the Catholic Church.


Ernst Haeckel was elected as a member to the American Philosophical Society in 1885.


Ernst Haeckel was awarded the title of Excellency by Kaiser Wilhelm II in 1907 and the Linnean Society of London's prestigious Darwin-Wallace Medal in 1908.


The research vessel Ernst Haeckel is named in his honor.


One of Ernst Haeckel's books did a great deal to explain his version of "Darwinism" to the world.


Ernst Haeckel's Weltrathsel were reprinted ten times after the book's first publication in 1899; ultimately, over 400,000 copies were sold.


On one hand, Ernst Haeckel was an advocate of scientific racism.


Ernst Haeckel was a social Darwinist who believed that "survival of the fittest" was a natural law, and that struggle led to improvement of the race.


Ernst Haeckel believed that Germany should be governed by an authoritarian political system, and that inequalities both within and between societies were an inevitable product of evolutionary law.


Ernst Haeckel was an extreme German nationalist who believed strongly in the superiority of German culture.


Ernst Haeckel was a pacifist until the First World War, when he wrote propaganda in favor of the war.


Nazis themselves divided on the question of whether Ernst Haeckel should be counted as a pioneer of their ideology.