Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Solander was born in Piteň, Sweden and was the son of a Lutheran rector. He studied under Linnaeus at Uppsala University and traveled to England in 1760 to promote Linnaeus' new system of classification. He was an assistant librarian at the British Museum from 1763, and elected to the Royal Society in the following year. Afterwards Keeper of Printed Books at the British Museum.
In 1768 he was employed by Joseph Banks to join him on James Cook's first voyage to the Pacific Ocean on board the Endeavour. He helped make and describe an important collection of Australian plants while the Endeavour was beached at the site of present-day Cooktown for nearly 7 weeks, after being damaged on the Great Barrier Reef.
On their return in 1771 he became Banks' secretary and librarian and lived in his house at Soho Square. In 1772 he accompanied Banks on his voyage to Iceland, the Faroes and the Orkney Islands. Between 1773 and 1782 he was Keeper of the Natural History Department of the British Museum.
Solander invented the book-form box, the Solander box which continues to be used in libraries and archives, as the most suitable way of storing prints and drawings, herbarium materials and some manuscripts.
The standard botanical author abbreviation Sol. is applied to plants he described.
- Duyker, Edward. 1998. Nature's Argonaut: Daniel Solander 1733-1782: Naturalist and Voyager with Cook and Banks. Melbourne University Press. ISBN 0-522-84753-6
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