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The Life and Work of Ph.Fr. von Siebold

更新日:2013年3月1日 ページID:009228

The Life and Work of Ph.Fr. von Siebold

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Philipp Franz von Siebold was born into a family of physicians in Wuerzburg, Bavaria (present-day Germany) on February 17, 1796. After entering Wuerzburg University, he studied not only medicine but also zoology, botany and ethnology. This extensive scientific knowledge became an important tool for his later research in Japan. Siebold arrived in Nagasaki in 1823 as resident physician at the Dutch Trading Post on Dejima Island in Nagasaki. During his stay he conducted research with the cooperation of the Dutch interpreters, Nagasaki artist Kawahara Keiga and the Japanese students who gathered in Nagasaki from around Japan to draw from the well of Western science. Later, he published the results of these studies in Europe, including information on the natural environment, geography, history, customs and arts of Nagasaki. In particular, his work "Nippon" published from 1832 reveals the high cultural level of Japan and the beauty of its natural environment. Siebold introduced Western medicine to Japan and contributed enormously to the modernization of the country. He was in fact one of the first Europeans to study Japan in depth and to promote knowledge about the country overseas.

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