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Jean Louis Agassiz

Jean Louis Agassiz

H401/0200

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Credit

JULES BUCHER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JULES BUCHER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Jean Louis Agassiz (1807-1873) was a Swiss-born naturalist and geologist. His main interestes were fish and glaciers, and his chief work on the former, Recherches sur les Poissons Fossiles, was released in parts from 1833-44. In 1840, he published Etudes sur les Glaciers, which concluded that great sheets of ice once covered many countries. While Agassiz has been criticized for his attacks on the Darwinian theory of evolution, he is best remembered in American educational circles for his opposition to the old style of learning by memorizing. He urged students to, Go to nature; take the facts into your own hands; look and see for yourself! Study nature not books! At Harvard, Agassiz founded the Museum of Natural History.

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