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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 65.djvu/185

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THE PRUSSIAN ACADEMY OF SCIENCE.

mond; Kosch and Baum, the botanists; Buschmann, the linguist; Pinder, the numismatist; Riedel, the historian; Curtius, linguist as well as historian; Kiepert, the geographer; Haupt, the philologist; Beyrich, the geologist; and Ewald, the paleontologist,—entered the academy and by the investigations in their special departments of study and their publications did their full share in increasing its fame throughout the world. When DuBois Reymond was a candidate for the academy, Alexander von Humboldt and Johannes Müller, his backers, described him as 'a fine experimenter in physics, physiology and chemistry' and added that 'he had been carefully trained in mathematics and the classics.' Reymond became one of the best known members of the academy, was in it forty-five years and lived for it as no one had done since the days of Merian. In 1850-51, Barthomess of Frankfurt, an honorary member of the academy, published what Harnack describes as a philosophical history of the academy. It covers the period from Leibniz to Schelling, and within its limits, Trendelenberg says it is unsurpassed. Notwithstanding the excitements in Berlin, as well as elsewhere on the continent of Europe, of the year 1848, and the anxiety caused by the failing health and the mental weakness of the king nearly a decade later, the members of the academy quietly performed their tasks and through its publications added something every year to the aggregate of human knowledge. Not a few of its members were recognized throughout the world as leaders in the departments of study to which they had devoted their energies. Alexander von Humboldt, who died in 1859, having been connected with the academy, either as honorary or as active member, since the beginning of the century, was present at one of its regular sessions in March as eager for knowledge as in his youthful days. With his death and that of Carl Fitter and William Grimm a great era in the history of the academy closed. But before entering upon that chapter of its history which unites it with the present, we may call attention to the fact that in 1845 Prescott, Sparks and Bancroft, American historians, were made corresponding members, that in 1852 Dr. Edward Robinson, the distinguished biblical scholar, was added to the list, and that in 1855 the same honor was accorded to Professor James D. Dana, the geologist, and Professor Asa Gray, the botanist.