Photograph of Gregor Mendel, Austrian botanist

Photograph of Gregor Mendel, Austrian botanist

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Caption: Gregor Mendel (1822-1884), Austrian botanist who discovered the basic statistical laws of heredity. While in the long term Mendel was certainly successful, laying as he did a foundation for the science of genetics, his work was largely ignored until 16 years after his death. A peasant farmer's son, he entered an Augustinian monastery when he was 21. In 1851 he was sent by the Abbot of the order to study science in Vienna for two years. When he returned he began his plant-breeding experiments in the monastery garden. By crossing various strains of pea he demonstrated that hereditary characteristics are transmitted via distinct elements, which are today called genes.

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Keywords: botanist, evolutionary biology, geneticist, genetics, gregor, hereditary, mendel, originator, pea genetics, portraits, surname m

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