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Lausanne (Switzerland) (search for this): chapter 6
scientific sympathy and personal friendship of the great master whom he had honored from childhood, and whose name was ever on his lips till his own work in this world was closed. The following letter, written two months later, to his uncle in Lausanne tells the story in detail. To Dr. Mayor. Paris, February 16, 1832. . . . I have also a piece of good news to communicate, which will, I hope, lead to very favorable results for me. I think I told you when I left for Paris that my chief an will be no less sure of it in Switzerland than in Paris, and since you cannot take part in their society, your relations with them will be the same at the distance of a hundred leagues as they are now. You must therefore leave Paris for Geneva, Lausanne, or Nechatel, or any city where you can support yourself by teaching. . . . This seems to me the most advantageous course for you. If before fixing yourself permanently you like to take your place at the parsonage again, you will always find us
Zurich (Switzerland) (search for this): chapter 6
Chapter 5: 1830-1832: Aet. 23-25. Year at home. leaves home for Paris. delays on the road. cholera. arrival in Paris. first visit to Cuvier. Cuvier's kindness. his death. poverty in Paris. home letters concerning embarrassments and about his work. singular dream. On the 4th of December, 1830, Agassiz left Munich, in company with Mr. Dinkel, and after a short stay at St. Gallen and Zurich, spent in looking up fossil fishes and making drawings of them, they reached Concise on the 30th of the same month. Anxiously as his return was awaited at home, we have seen that his father was not without apprehension lest the presence of the naturalist, with artist, specimens, and apparatus, should be an inconvenience in the quiet parsonage. But every obstacle yielded to the joy of reunion, and Agassiz was soon established with his painter, his fossils, and all his scientific outfit, under the paternal roof. Thus quietly engaged in his ichthyological studies, carrying on
Switzerland (Switzerland) (search for this): chapter 6
dy seen in Paris all those persons whom you thought it essential to see; unless you are strangely mistaken in their good-will, you will be no less sure of it in Switzerland than in Paris, and since you cannot take part in their society, your relations with them will be the same at the distance of a hundred leagues as they are now. public. I should be sorry to lose all right to them, because I hope they may have another final destination. I do not despair of seeing the different parts of Switzerland united at some future day by a closer tie, and in case of such a union a truly Helvetic university would become a necessity; then, my aim would be to make my collection the basis of that which they would be obliged to found for their courses of lectures. It is really a shame that Switzerland, richer and more extensive than many a small kingdom, should have no university, when some states of not half its size have even two; for instance, the grand duchy of Baden, one of whose universitie
Strasbourg (France) (search for this): chapter 6
myself there as I could wish. I have collected for my fossil fishes all the materials I still desired to obtain from the museums of Carlsruhe, Heidelberg, and Strasbourg, and have extended my knowledge of geology sufficiently to join, without embarrassment at least, in conversation upon the more recent researches in that departm on this account, with the view of increasing my materials and having thereby a better chance of success with M. Cuvier, that I desired so earnestly to stop at Strasbourg and Carlsruhe, where I knew specimens were to be seen which would have a direct bearing on my aim. The result has far surpassed my expectation. I hastened to slearly that this was my only chance of competing with him, and it was not without reason that I insisted so strongly on having Dinkel with me in passing through Strasbourg and subsequently at Carlsruhe. Had I not done so, M. Cuvier might still be in advance of me. Now my mind is at rest on this score; I have already written you a
Rudolf Virchow (search for this): chapter 6
for meals, and commended his devotion to study, but added, Be careful, and remember that work kills. They were the last words he heard from his beloved teacher. The next day, as Cuvier was going up to the tribune in the Chamber of Deputies, he fell, was taken up paralyzed, and carried home. Agassiz never saw him again. This warning of Cuvier, Work kills, strangely recalls Johannes Muller's Blood clings to work; the one seems the echo of the other. See Memoir of Johannes Muler, by Rudolf Virchow, p. 38. In order to keep intact these few data respecting his personal relations with Cuvier, as told in later years by Agassiz himself, the course of the narrative has been anticipated by a month or two. Let us now return to the natural order. The letter to his uncle of course gave great pleasure at home. Just after reading it his father writes (February, 1832), Now that you are intrusted with the portfolio of M. Cuvier, I suppose your plan is considerably enlarged, and that you
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