- 1. Dates
- Born: Herford, Westphalia, date unknown The first solid information about him comes from 1640
- Died: probably Venice, 1670
- Dateinfo: Birth Unknown
- Lifespan: N/A
- 2. Father
- Occupation: Artisan
- His father is said to have been a miller to the Abbess at Herford. His mother was the abbess herself.
- No information on financial conditions under which he was reared.
- 3. Nationality
- Birth: Herford, Westphalia, Germany
- Career: Germany, and Venice, Italy
- Death: probably Venice, Italy
- 4. Education
- Schooling: Padua, M.D.
- He is said to have been apprenticed to an apothecary but lost his job because of thievery.
- About 1640 he went east to Holstein and Prussia, serving as an apprentice in apothecaries in Lemgo, Kiel, Danzig (1640), and Königsberg (from 1641).
- 1644, he went to Italy, where he received an M.D. from the University of Padua in 1652.
- 5. Religion
- Affiliation: Unknown
- 6. Scientific Disciplines
- Primary: Pharmacology, Iatrochemistry, Alchemy
- 7. Means of Support
- Primary: Apothecary
- In his early years he was supported as an apprentice to various apothecaries.
- After he received his degree from Padua, the only thing known about his means of support is that he settled in Venice, where he sold a "viperine salt" (sal viperinum) as a sovereign remedy.
- 8. Patronage
- Type: None
- His Epistola de famoso liquore Alkahest is in the form of a letter to Duke Frederick of Holstein. A letter also exists from Tachenius to the Prince of Brunswick and Lüneberg. In the world of alchemy this could mean almost anything, and I am unwilling to venture any conjecture.
- 9. Technological Involvement
- Type: Pharmacology
- He seems to have supported himself on the income from a pharmacological preparation of his own invention.
- 10. Scientific Societies
- Memberships: None
- Walter Pagel, Allgemeine deutsche Biographie, 37, 340.
- A. Hirsch, Biographisches Lexikon der hervorragenden Aerzte aller Zeiten und Voelker (3rd ed., Munich, 1962), 5, 504.
- Partington, 2, 291-6.
- Thorndike, 8, 357-61.
- John Ferguson, Bibliotheca chemica, (London, 1906, 1954), 2, 424-5.
- [Z5524.A35 G54]
- Compiled by:
- Richard S. Westfall
- Department of History and Philosophy of Science
- Indiana University
Note: the creators of the Galileo Project and this catalogue
cannot answer email on geneological questions.