Gunner, John Ernest

, a German prelate and naturalist, was born at Christiana, in Norway, in 1718. He was educated at the public school of Christiana, and in 1737 removed to Copenhagen, where he pursued his studies with great success. In 1742 he began the study of theology, philosophy, and mathematics in the university of Halle, and in 1754 was invited to be extraordinary professor of theology at Copenhagen, preacher at Herlufsholm, and lecturer in theology and the Hebrew language in the public school of that place. Shortly after this, he was ordained priest at Copenhagen, and in 1758 was appointed by his majesty Frederic V. bishop of Drontheim. He was the founder of the royal Norwegian society at Drontheim, of which he was elected vice-president, and in the Transactions of which, he published several curious and useful papers on subjects of natural history. He was a zealous student in botany, and so highly esteemed by Linnæus, that he gave the name of Gunnera to a plant in his system. He was enrolled among the members of the academies of Stockholm, Copenhagen, and other learned societies. He published “Flora Norvegica,” in two parts, fol. 1766, &c. containing 1118 species, to each of which are added the medical uses. The author died in 1773. 2


Dict. Hist. Rees’s Cyclopædia.