Christian Gottfried Ehrenberg

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Ehrenberg, Christian Gottfried


Born Apr. 19, 1795, in Delitzsch, near Leipzig; died June 27, 1876, in Berlin. German naturalist and zoologist. Member of the Leopoldina German Academy of Naturalists (1818) and the Academy of Sciences in Berlin (1826). Ehrenberg was educated at the University of Leipzig. From 1820 to 1826 he traveled throughout Egypt and along the Red Sea coast. Beginning in 1826, he was a professor at the University of Berlin. In 1829 he took part in A. von Humboldt’s expedition to Western Siberia.

Ehrenberg’s main works were devoted to protozoans, primarily infusorians. Ehrenberg studied the phosphorescence of the sea, induced by microorganisms, and established the role of microorganisms in the formation of sedimentary rocks.

Ehrenberg was a foreign corresponding member of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences from 1829 and an honorary member from 1840.


Naturgeschichtliche Reisen durch Nord-Africa und West-Asien in den Jahren 1820 bis 1825 . . ., vol. 1, part 1. Berlin, 1828.
Die Infusionsthierchen als vollkommene Organismen. Leipzig, 1838.
Das Leuchten des Meeres. Berlin, 1835.
Über die Natur und Bildung der Coralleninseln und Corallenbänke in Rothen Meere. Berlin, 1834.


Stresemann. E. Hemprich und Ehrenberg: Reisen zweier naturforschender Freunde in Orient. . . . Berlin, 1954.
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In recent years, this subspecies has been elevated to species level Mustela subpalmata first described by the distinguished naturalists Wilhelm Hemprich and Christian Gottfried Ehrenberg in 1833.
Edward Forbes (1815-1854) and Christian Gottfried Ehrenberg (1795-1876) engaged in a long argument on this point until repairs in 1860 to the telegraph cable laid between Sardinia and Annaba (Algeria) in 1858 at a depth of 7,218 ft (2,200 m), showed many unknown organisms (mainly coelenterates and molluscs) had settled on the cable in the two intervening years.
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