Etimologia botanica
di Alexandre de Théis

Biografie botaniche


QuassieQuassie van Timotibo

QuerJosé Quer y Martínez


Quassie van Timotibo or Kwasimukamba or Graman Quassi (also spelled Quacy, Kwasi and Quasi) (ca. 1690 – ca. 1780) was a Surinamese healer, botanist, slave and later freedman of the 18th century, who is today best known for having given his name to the plant genus Quassia. Kwasi's roots were among the Kwa speaking Akan people of present day Ghana, but as a child he was enslaved and brought to the New World. As a slave in Suriname a dutch colony in South America, he participated in the wars against the Saramaka maroons as a scout and negotiator for the Dutch, and he lost his right ear during the fighting. For this reason the Surinamese maroons remember him as a traitor. Kwasi worked as a healer of some renown, and fared so well that he was able to get his freedom and travel to the Netherlands. One of his remedies was a bitter tea that he used to treat infections by intestinal parasites, this concoction was based on the plant Quassia amara which Carolus Linnaeus named after him, as the discoverer of its medicinal properties. Quassia continues to be used in industrially produced medicines against intestinal parasites today. In contemporary accounts he was described as "one of the most extraordinary black men in Suriname, and perhaps the world". ––– Il Suriname (anche chiamata Guyana Olandese) è una Repubblica dell'America meridionale con una superficie di 163.270 km². Conta 433.998 abitanti ed ha per capitale Paramaribo. Confina a nord con l'Oceano Atlantico, a est con la Guyana Francese, a sud con il Brasile e a ovest con la Guyana. La lingua ufficiale è l'olandese, che costituisce anche la lingua franca del paese insieme allo Sranan Tongo. Le altre lingue maggiormente diffuse sono l'hindi, il giavanese e la saramacca.


José Quer y Martínez (1695–1764), was a Spanish doctor and botanist. This botanist is denoted by the author abbreviation Quer when citing a botanical name. Quer studied medicine and surgery in his hometown of Perpignan, where he was born in 1695, with particular emphasis on botany. He later joined the army, where. as a military surgeon, he traveled extensively in Spain, France, Italy and northern Africa (where he took part in the operation to capture Oran), prepared herbarium specimens, and collected a large quantity of seeds and living plants. With these he established a botanical garden in 1755 which has evolved into today's Real Jardín Botánico de Madrid. In 1762 he launched the publication of his Spanish Flora and history of the plants that are grown in Spain, (Flora española o historia de las plantas que se crían en España, which led him to correspond with Carolus Linnaeus). He published only four volumes of this work before his death. It was completed one of his successors, Casimiro Gomez Ortega. Quer published two lectures, one on the "Uva ursi or gayuba" (1763) and the other on the "Cicuta" (1764).