Gregor Mendel (MGA2-05-Found1a)

Gregor Mendel (1822-1884)

    Johann Mendel was born on 20 July 1822  in Heinzendorf, Silesia, at the time a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. He entered the Augustinian Abbey of St. Thomas in Brünn (now Brno in the Czech Republic) in 1843, where he took the religious name Gregor, and was ordained as a priest in 1847. He studied science at the University of Vienna, and although he failed to pass his final examinations, he nonetheless was allowed to return to the abbey, where he taught high school physics.  His students universally praised his qualities as a teacher.

    Mendel performed a number of breeding experiments with bees, mice, and plants. The results of his research on peas were presented publically and published as "Experiments on Plant Hybridization", in 1866 in the Proceedings of the Natural History Society of Brno, a well-known scientific journal. His work made no impact, and remained essentially unknown until its simultaneous rediscovery in 1900 by three independent workers, one of whom had duplicated his experimental results. Mendel is now recognized as the "Father of Genetics."

    Mendel was elected Abbot in 1868, at which point his experimental work was sharply curtailed. He died on 06 January 1884 from a chronic kidney condition, exacerbated by the burden of his administrative duties.

Figure ©2002 by Griffiths et al;. all text material ©2010 by Steven M. Carr