Józef Warszewicz (1812–1866) and taxonomical history of Warszewiczia coccinea (Vahl) Klotzsch

Authors

  • Alicja Zemanek Botanic Garden, Institute of Botany, Jagiellonian University (Kraków, Poland)
  • Bogdan Zemanek Botanic Garden, Institute of Botany, Jagiellonian University (Kraków, Poland)
  • Tomasz Głuszak Botanic Garden, Institute of Botany, Jagiellonian University (Kraków, Poland)
  • Marcin Nobis Institute of Botany, Jagiellonian University (Kraków, Poland)

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.4467/2543702XSHS.21.017.14048

Keywords:

Central and South America, Johann Friedrich Klotzsch, Julius von Rohr, Martin Vahl, plant collector, herbarium

Abstract

Józef Warszewicz (1812–1866) – traveler and naturalist, the main horticulturist (inspector) of the Botanic Garden of theJagiellonian University in Kraków, was one of the first plant collectors in the tropical regions of Central and South America. From his travels (1844–1850, 1850–1853) he sent and brought to Europe hundreds of previously unknown plants, primarily orchids, in addition to representatives of other families.

One of the collected species was Warszewiczia coccinea (red warszewiczia in English, warszewiczia czerwona in Polish), described by Johann F. Klotzsch and named after the collector. It is a small tree or shrub with large, red inflorescences, growing wild in the American tropics and often cultivated as an ornamental. It plays a significant role in the culture of the island country of Trinidad and Tobago in the Little Antilles archipelago, where it is considered a “national plant”.

The aim of this article is to highlight one of the chapters in the history of systematics (taxonomy) relating to Józef Warszewicz and the plants described on the basis of his collections, especially red warszewiczia.

Many of the so-called “Warszewicz species” have survived in the taxonomy to this day. His unique collection is stored in the Herbarium of the Jagiellonian University – Herbarium Universitatis Iagellonicae Cracoviensis – KRA. There are specimens important to the science – lectotypes (model representations) of the species Warszewiczia pulcherrima (= W. coccinea).

Author Biographies

Alicja Zemanek, Botanic Garden, Institute of Botany, Jagiellonian University (Kraków, Poland)

Bogdan Zemanek, Botanic Garden, Institute of Botany, Jagiellonian University (Kraków, Poland)

Tomasz Głuszak, Botanic Garden, Institute of Botany, Jagiellonian University (Kraków, Poland)

Marcin Nobis, Institute of Botany, Jagiellonian University (Kraków, Poland)

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13-09-2021

How to Cite

Zemanek, A., Zemanek, B., Głuszak, T., & Nobis, M. (2021). Józef Warszewicz (1812–1866) and taxonomical history of Warszewiczia coccinea (Vahl) Klotzsch. Studia Historiae Scientiarum, 20, 601–625. https://doi.org/10.4467/2543702XSHS.21.017.14048

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