Friedrich Wilhelm Eduard Gerhard  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Friedrich Wilhelm Eduard Gerhard (November 29, 1795 – May 12, 1867) was a German archaeologist. He was co-founder and secretary of the first international archaeological society.

Gerhard was born at Posen, and was educated at Breslau and Berlin. The reputation he acquired by his Lectiones Apollonianae (1816) led soon afterwards to his being appointed professor at the gymnasium of Posen. On resigning that office in 1819, on account of weakness of the eyes, he went in 1822 to Rome, where he remained for fifteen years.

Under the leadership of Christian von Bunsen, Prussian ambassador to Rome, Gerhard was one of the principal originators of the Instituto di corrispondenza archeologica, founded at Rome in 1829. Co-founders included Theodor Panofka, Otto Magnus von Stackelberg and August Kestner. This model of international cooperation and systematic scientific publication was influenced by the example of Alexander von Humboldt, and later became the present-day German Archaeological Institute. Gerhard served as secretary to the new Institute.

Returning to Germany in 1837 he was appointed archaeologist at the Royal Museum of Berlin, and in 1844 was chosen a member of the Academy of Sciences, and a professor in Berlin University.


Gerhard contributed to Platner's Beschreibung der Stadt Rom. Besides a large number of archaeological papers in periodicals, in the Annali of the Institute of Rome, and in the Transactions of the Berlin Academy, and several illustrated catalogues of Greek, Roman and other antiquities in the Berlin, Naples and Vatican Museuma Gerhard was the author of the following works:

  • Antike Bildwerke (Stuttgart, 1827-1844)
  • Auserlesene griech. Vasenbilder (1839—1858)
  • Etruskische Spiegel (1839-1865)
  • Hyperboreisch-röm. Studien (vol. i., 1833; vol. ii., 1852)
  • Prodromus mytholog. Kunsterklärung (Stuttgart and Tübingen, 1828)
  • Griech. Mythologie (1854-1855)
  • Gesammelte akademische Abhandlungen und kleine Schriften were published posthumously in 2 vols., Berlin, 1867.

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