Page:A memoir of Lewis David von Schweinitz.djvu/29

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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF

English, German, French and Latin languages. Unlike most persons of German descent, but in common with Pope, Scott, and some other eminent men, he was entirely insensible to the charms of music; yet as we have seen, this circumstance did not involve him in the celebrated category of Shakespeare; for though no music, he surely had abundance of harmony in his soul.

Our sketch of the scientific labours of the deceased, must necessarily be confined to some leading points in the general character of his more important works, and a brief account of his collections.

When we consider the extreme difficulty of the particular departments of Botany to which Mr. Schweinitz devoted his chief attention, the prodigious number of facts which he has accumulated, the vast amount of minute and delicate investigation demanded by the nature of the objects of his study, the labour of preparing for the press the materials which he had brought together; when we recollect, that, with the exception of Dr. Muhlenburg of Lancaster, no American botanist had ventured far upon this wide and unexplored dominion of nature; and when we remember that this science was his relaxation, not his profession; his occasional pursuit, not his daily duty, we are forcibly struck with the high order of his talents for the pursuit of physical science, and cannot but regret that more of his time and energies could not have been devoted to this favourite occupation.

The botanical works of Mr. Schweinitz indicate, not only great industry and perseverance in the collection