Max Ernst Wichura

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Max Ernst Wichura (* 27 January 1817 in Neisse; † 24/25 February 1866 in Berlin) was a Silesian-Prussian jurist, government councillor and botanical traveller.[1][2]

Life and work

The son of a district court judge attended the Friedrichs Gymnasium in Breslau, where principal Friedrich Wimmer awakened his interest in biology.

He studied law in Breslau and Bonn from 1836-39, was a city judge in Breslau from 1851-1857, then moved into administration and was appointed a government councillor in Breslau in 1859.

He made several botanical trips, such as to Ustron in Austrian Silesia in the summer of 1846, and a major excursion to Lapland in the summer of 1856 with Wallenberg of Breslau and Erik Carl Johan Cederstraehle of Uppsala. In the Alps and Carpathians he undertook cryptogamic studies. At the suggestion of the Academy of Sciences, he accompanied, together with the zoologist Eduard von Martens, the gardener Otto Schottmüller († 1 December 1865 in Berlin[3][4][5]), staff physician Carl Friedel (1833-1885), and Ferdinand von Richthofen, he accompanied the Prussian expedition on the SMS Thetis (1855) to East Asia as a botanist from autumn 1859. They visited Madeira, Rio de Janeiro, Singapore, Manila and various coasts of the Chinese and Japanese empires. After his return in the summer of 1863, he was granted leave at the end of 1865 to work on his plant collection in Berlin. He succumbed to carbon monoxide poisoning in the process.


Street sign of Wichurastraße in Berlin-Lankwitz.

The semi-evergreen climbing rose Rosa wichuraiana, which he brought from Japan, is named after him; with it René Barbier (rose breeder) bred many valuable varieties. The plant genus Wichuraea

.Roem. of the family Amarylidaceae is also named after him.[6]

In Berlin-Lankwitz, the former Mühlenhofstraße has been named after him since 11 March 1937.[7]


  • Bastard fertilization in the plant kingdom explained by the bastards of the willows; 1865

Web links

Wikisource: Max Ernst Wichura– Sources and full texts


  1. Ernst Wunschmann: Wichura, Max. In: Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie (ADB). Vol. 42, Duncker & Humblot, Leipzig 1897, pp. 316-318.
  2. Lexikon deutschsprachiger Bryologen, vol. 2, p. 560.
  3. Lexikon deutschsprachiger Bryologen, vol. 2, p. 470.
  6. Lotte Burkhardt: Verzeichnis eponymischer Pflanzennamen – Erweiterte Edition. Parts I and II. Botanic Garden and Botanical Museum Berlin, Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin 2018, ISBN 978-3-946292-26-5 doi:10.3372/epolist2018.
  7. kaupertmedia:Wichurastraße 1-117 in Berlin – KAUPERTS.Retrieved 21 January 2021.