DISCUS: The History of Discus – FIRST DISCOVERY (Part 2)

By Heiko Bleher
Natterer’s involvement with the collections during the “French years” and repatriations was one reason why in 1816 he was promoted to “supervisory assistant” in the Naturalien-Cabinet, and ultimately was appointed scientific leader of the Brazil expedition in the field. Even so, shortly before the departure of the expedition there was a dispute, as there were moves to replace him with a certain naturalist from Prague, Doctor Johann Christian Mikan k.k. (of the Cabinet of Natural Objects), a professor of botany, a suggestion he opposed vigorously. In the end the expedition party was split into two groups, with each of them leading one part. Both groups had to follow the direct instructions of their respective leader, and in every case consult him with regard to suggestions for excursions and collections to be made…
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