Dietrich Georg von Kieser



Doctor, scientist, writer


Born: 24.08.1779 in Hamburg

Died: 11.10.1862 in Jena


Doctorate: 1804 in Göttingen (medicine)

University lecturer: 1812 - 1814, 1817 - 1862 Jena


Kieser, the son of a pastor, studied medicine in Würzburg and Göttingen before practising in Winseln an der Luhe and in Northeim (from 1806). Following his prize-winning "Memoire sur l'organisation des plantes" (1812), he received many offers of professorships. Kieser eventually decided to become extra-ordinary professor for general and specialised pathology in Jena, where he also lectured on the history of medicine, anatomy and on the physiology of plants.

His teaching was interrupted from 1814 to 1817 when he joined the Weimar troops on an expedition to France as sergeant and doctor. In 1815 Kieser, now in Prussian service, took over the directorship of the military hospitals in Lüttich and Versailles.

Following his return in 1817, Kieser's efforts in Jena were rewarded with numerous promotions and awards. He was made a full professor in 1824. In 1817, he had founded the "Archiv für den thierischen Magnetismus" (Archive for Animal Magnetism), and 12 volumes had been published by 1824.

As representative of the national university, Kieser was a member of the parliament from 1831 to 1848, and its vice-president from 1844 to 1848. He became director of the Grand Ducal Mental Hospital in 1847, continuing in that function until 1858. During his period as director of the Leopoldinisch-Carolinischen Akademie der Naturforscher (Leopoldian-Carolingian college of natural scientists), he attempted to rehabilitate Christian Gottfried Nees von Esenbeck, the college's president, who had been dismissed from the civil service for political reasons. Following Nees von Esenbeck's death in 1858, the 69-year-old Kieser became president himself. An ennoblement and the title of Imperial Palatine Duke were attached to the presidency, and Kieser accepted these as part of the celebrations surrounding his 50 year presidential anniversary, which took place a few months before his death in 1862.

Back to page: Who are the central figures of Romantic Anthropology



This page was designed by Uli Wunderlich, and translated by Adam Lawrence. Update: Manfred Engel. Please contact Prof. Dr. Manfred Engel if you have any questions.

FR 4.1 - Germanistik / Universität des Saarlandes
Last update:  2003-07-25 (me)