Peter Wilhelm Lund (1801-1880)
Peter Wilhelm Lund (June 14, 1801 – May 25, 1880) was a Danish zoologist and paleontologist who spent most of his life working and living in Brazil.
He was born in a wealthy family and studied Medicine at the University of Copenhagen. In 1825 he made his first trip to Brazil, where he spent three years mainly collecting plants near Rio de Janeiro. Back to Europe in 1829, he achieved a doctoral degree at the University of Kiel, traveled to Italy and later established in Paris, where he came under the influence of Georges Cuvier, professor of comparative anatomy at the Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle and the most influential naturalist and zoologist of the time.
Lund suddenly stopped the work in the caves, alleging lack of resources to finance the excavations. He then donated his huge collection to the king and the people of Denmark. Alleging this time a fragile health condition, he decided to stay in Lagoa Santa, never to return to Europe.
The next 35 years were spent exchanging letters with the curators of his collections in Copenhagen, as well as receiving the visits of young European naturalists. The complete study of his collections, E Museo Lundii, was published only in 1888.
While living in Lagoa Santa, he hosted several European naturalists, such as the Danish botanist Eugenius Warming. Lund never married and died in Lagoa Santa three weeks before completing the age of 79.
The journal Lundiana is named to his honour. Lund is considered the "Father of Brazilian paleontology and archeology." His voluminous correspondence with Brazilian scientists and institutions is still uncollected.
Crematogaster gen. n.; Dolichoderus gen. n.