Alexandre de Humboldt

Alexandre de Humboldt was born in 1769 in Tegel, in the Prussian principality (which became a kingdom in 1806). He came from an ennobled family in the service of the King of Prussia. After studying at the University of Göttingen and a stay in Paris, he became an engineer and senior mining advisor. Following the death of his mother, he devoted himself to scientific exploration.Unable to join the scientific expeditions of General Bonaparte (1769-1821) to Egypt and Nicolas Baudin (1754-1803) to the South Sea, he decided to visit the Spanish colonies in America.From 1799 to 1804, accompanied by Aimé Bonpland, he explored equinoctial America, New Spain, Cuba and the United States. On his return to Europe, he settled mainly in Paris, where he published most of his work.

Fascinated by the spectacles of Nature from an early age, he devoted his entire life and energy to observing, describing and discovering the world and natural phenomena (one of his most famous works is entitled Tableaux de la Nature). As an explorer, he immersed himself in the world's geography, and published the results of his discoveries and scientific reflections in editions of remarkable quality.In 1827, he returned to Berlin to live with the King of Prussia, who had asked him to return. In 1829, he travelled to Russia and continued writing his Cosmos.

Humboldt, a universal savant, contributed to many fields of science. He is best known for his work on plant geography and ethnology.He died on May 6, 1859, at the age of ninety, having published his last work, a praise of the Earth and Nature entitled Cosmos, , which remained unfinished.

Find out more about Humboldt and Bonpland's trip to Hispanic America:

About him :

On the itinerary of the field missions to Colombia carried out by MNHN and the Enlaces Artísticos Association: