Georg Wilhelm Steller

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Steller, Georg Wilhelm


(also G. W. Stoeller). Born Mar. 10 (21), 1709, in Windsheim, Franconia, in what is now the Federal Republic of Germany; died Nov. 12 (23), 1746, in Tiu-men’. Explorer and naturalist. Corresponding member of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences (1737).

Steller took part in the Second Kamchatka Expedition. During the years 1740–41 and 1742–43 he conducted research in Kamchatka. In 1741 he took part in V. Bering’s voyage to North America and spent the winter of 1741–42 on Bering Island of the Komandorskie Islands. It is here that he wrote the first description of the island, as well as the work On Marine Animals (published 1753), which contains the first description of the animal known as Steller’s sea cow. Steller’s other works are A Voyage From Kamchatka to America With Commodore Bering (1793) and A Description of the Land of Kamchatka (1774).


Iz Kamchatki v Ameriku. Leningrad, 1928.


Berg, L. S. Otkrytie Kamchatki i ekspeditsii Beringa. Moscow-Leningrad, 1946.
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This is a detailed and lavishly illustrated biography of Georg Wilhelm Steller (1707-1746), Alaska's first naturalist.
German naturalist Georg Wilhelm Steller first described the seals as 'sea apes' when he observed them in 1741 off the coast of what would become Alaska.