Johann von Goethe, German author

Johann von Goethe, German author

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832), German author and scientist. Goethe's Faust is lauded as one of the peaks of world literature. As an anatomist, he showed that the human jawbone contained structures similar to those in other creatures and proposed the skull to be formed of extended, fused vertebrae. His botanical study was published as Metamorphosis of Plants, stating that all plant structures were modified leaves. He was also an early evolutionist who believed that animals became more 'specialised' through the ages.

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