Collecting localities




Tärnström, Christopher


(Source: Flora Malesiana ser. 1, 5: Cyclopaedia of collectors, Supplement I)


Born: 1703, Halmbyboda i Uppland, Sweden. Died: Dec. 4 or 5, 1746, Pulo Condor, island off the coast of Cambodia, Indo-China



Was educated at Uppsala University (from 1724); minister and pedagogue at Östhammar 1739; pedagogue at Vaxholm 1741; studied botany with Linnaeus from 1738-44; fil. kand. 1745 and fil. dr. in 1746 (non-attendant). In 1745 he was appointed chaplain on a ship of the Swedish East India Company to China, but died on the voyage out, without possibility to collect China plants for Linnaeus. The latter called him an excellent collector, but nothing more.

He was Linné’s first apostle to foreign countries.

The genus Ternstroemia Mutis was named after him.


Collecting localities:1

Arrived at Göteborg Dec. 10, 1745, but the ‘Callmar’ and ‘Cronprins Adolph Friederic’ did not sail before Feb. 13, 1746; touching Cadiz, passing the Canary Islands; rounding the Cape (July 20); Sept. 3 Java was sighted; taking in water, T. going ashore, collecting at least Algae, corals, shells, etc.; Sept. 6 and following days trading with the natives, T. taking care of his collections; Ban(g)ka Straits (13), heading for the north, and Oct. 13 anchoring in the harbour of Poli (= Pulo) Condor off the coast of Indo-China, staying there till Apr. 15, 1747 when the ships proceeded to Canton. Nov. 10, 1746 T. fell seriously ill. The ships back at Göteborg in May and June 1748.



He made collections during the voyage, and as the ship passed Sunda Straits, these might contain some Malaysian (Java) plants. If so they will be with Herb. Linnaeus in Linn. Soc. Lond. [LINN]. From a letter from Lagerström to Linnaeus it is evident that at least a fruit was collected on the coast of Java.2



(1) Cf. ‘Om Christopher Tärnströms resejournaler under en resa till Ostindien (1746)’ (Svensk. Linné-Sällskap. Årsskr. 1, 1918, p. 126-144; summary by the 1st librarian Dr A. W. Grape after the MS in Uppsala University Library).

(2) Cf. ‘Bref och Skrifvelser of och till Carl von Linné etc.’ I, 8, 1922, p. 16 note 4. BIOGRAPHICAL DATA. Krok, Bibl. Bot. Suec. 1925, p. 727; Backer, Verkl. Woordenb. 1936 (Chr. Ternström).