Louis Agassiz, 1807-1873

[Mentioned in Science and Health, pp. 104, 547, 549, 561]

Louis Agassiz revolutionized the study of natural science. Once when he was asked what he considered his greatest work, he replied, "I have taught men to observe." Believing that the study of nature is "an intercourse with the highest mind." he insisted that his students use the tools he did—observation and comparison.

His own encyclopedic range of information grew from his intense interest in nature, which began in childhood and increased with the years, giving to his life a singular unity of purpose. Added to this was an enthusiasm for sharing his observations with others which made him an inspired teacher and lecturer.

His birthplace, the Swiss village of Motier on Lake Morat, gave him opportunity for his first study of botany and fresh-water fishes. After receiving a classical education he attended medical school in Zurich, then the universities of Heidelberg and Munich. At the age of twenty-three, besides holding two degrees—Doctor of Philosophy and Doctor of Medicine—he was widely known for his original research.

Enjoy 1 free Sentinel article or audio program each month, including content from 1898 to today.

Signs of the Times
June 26, 1954

We'd love to hear from you!

Easily submit your testimonies, articles, and poems online.