Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Mociño, José

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MOCIÑO, José (mo-theen'-yo), Mexican naturalist, b. in Temascaltepec about 1760; d. in Barcelona, Spain, 12 June, 1819. He studied in the Seminary Tridentino of Mexico, devoting himself especially to physics, mathematics, botany, and chemistry. In 1791 he accompanied Sesse on a scientific expedition to California and Nootka, and from 1795 till 1804, by order of Charles IV., they made several journeys to examine the natural productions of Mexico. They travelled more than 3,000 leagues and formed a valuable collection, including a considerable herbarium and a great number of sketches, which they carried to Spain. After the death of Sesse, on account of the political disturbances, Mociño was obliged to take refuge in Montpellier. There he met Decandolle, director of the botanical garden, showed him his collection of manuscripts for a “Flora Mexicana,” and intrusted them to him, fearing that he himself would never return to his own country. Afterward he returned to Spain, and in April, 1817, asked Decandolle, then in Geneva, to return his collection, which was copied by the latter. Mociño's manuscript is in the botanical garden of Madrid, as well as a “Flora de Guatemala.” He also wrote “Descripción del Volcan Jorullo en versos latinos” (Mexico, 1801), and “Observaciones sobre la resina del hule,” published in the “Anales de Ciencias Naturales” (Madrid, 1804).