The New International Encyclopædia/Müller, Johann Friedrich Theodor

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The New International Encyclopædia
Müller, Johann Friedrich Theodor
Edition of 1905. See also Fritz Müller on Wikipedia, and the disclaimer.

MÜLLER, Johann Friedrich Theodor (known as Fritz Müller, or Müller-Desterro) (1821-97). A German naturalist, known for his contributions to bionomics and to the evolution theory. He was born at Windischholzhausen, near Erfurt. He studied at Greifswald and Berlin. The troubles of 1848 finally drove him from home and Berlin, and he emigrated to Southern Brazil, settling at Blumenau, on the island of Santa Catharina. Here he lived the life of a colonist and pioneer until 1856, when he became a teacher of mathematics and natural history in the gymnasium at Desterro. After various changes he was in 1874 appointed naturalista viajante of the museum at Rio Janeiro, and lived at Itajahy. Afterwards he was suddenly dismissed from his position, without any explanation from the authorities, and returned to Blumenau.

Müller published numerous papers on jellyfishes and worms, but more particularly on crustaceans and insects, his articles appearing mostly in Wiegmann's Archiv für Naturgeschichte, Kosmos, Natur, and the Annals of the Rio Janeiro Museum. His single book, Facts for Darwin, vas called out by Darwin's Origin of Species, and it gave him wide fame. It was written at Desterro in 1863, was published at Leipzig in 1864, and was translated, with some additions, into English in London in 1869. It was the application of Darwinian principles to certain forms of a single class, the Crustacea. In this book we have, in the chapter on the “Progress of Evolution,” the first clear statement of the biogenetic law or recapitulation theory afterwards restated by Haeckel. Müller also proposed the theory of mimicry which bears his name. See Mimicry.