Biographical data


Seba, Albert


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


Born: 1665, Etzel, East Friesland, Germany. Died: 1736, Amsterdam, Holland.



Is sometimes said to have accompanied the voyages of several merchantships to India, and to have brought home important collections of natural history objects; later investigations do not make this probable. When settled at Amsterdam as a dispenser, he sold his cabinet to Czar Peter the Great. Afterwards he made a still larger collection which was sold in parts after his death.

He edited a work in 4 volumes entitled ‘Locupletissimi rerum naturalium thesauri accurata descriptio’, illustrated with many coloured plates (Amsterdam, 1734-65).1

Though his interest was mainly zoological, there remains the possibility that he collected plants too. Blume says in his ‘Collections des Orchidées les plus remarquables etc. (Amsterdam 1858, p. 36) under Goodyera pusilla: ‘Habit. In Java occidentals in sylvis montis Pangarango mense Junio florens a me lecta. Habemus, ex Herbario, ut videtur, quod collegit Seba, specimen minus completum hujus speciei, cui manu ipse suâ Burmann ascripsit: ‘Apocynum reticulatum’. Infra alid manu scriptum, sed litura deletum est: ‘Petola Rumphij Herb. Amboin. Lib. 9 Seba Thes. II, p. 31 tab. 30 num. 4. addito infra in margine ‘depicta’.



Several plants in Herb. Brit. Mus. [BM].



(1) cf. H.J. Veth, Overzicht ... voor de kennis der fauna van Ned. Indië, Leiden 1879, p. 8.


biographical data:

Haller, Bibl. BOY., 2, 1772, p. 232-233; Svensk Linn. Sällsk. Årsskrift 20, 1937, p. 75-100 -l- portr. and other ill., incl. bibliogr.; H. Engel, Alphabetical list of Dutch zoological cabinets etc. (in Bijdr. t.d. Dierk. 27, 1939), p. 315; Ned. Kruidk. Arch. 50, 1940, p. 200.