Tozzetti, John Targioni

, an eminent botanist, the son of Leonard Targioni, born at | Florence Sept. 11, 1722, was sent to the university of Pisa, where he very soon distinguished himself by a thesis on the use of medicine. At the age of nineteen he became acquainted with the famous botanist Micheli, by whom he was protected, with whom he kept up an uninterrupted friendship till 1737, when Micheli died, and whom he succeeded in the care of the famous botanic garden. Of the plants in this garden Micheli had already made a catalogue, which Targioni published after his death, with very considerable additions by himself. In the year 1737, he was made professor of botany in the Studio Fiorentino, a kind of university at Florence, and at the same time member of the academy ofApatisti. In 1738, he became a member of the Collegio Medico, or faculty of Medicine. Much about the same time he was named by government consulting physician in pestilential disorders, aud had the place of fiscal physician (physician to the courts of justice). This last place obliged him to write a great deal, being often consulted on the accidents that became discussions for a court of justice, such as deaths by poison, sudden deaths, unheard-of distempers, and (when, as it sometimes happened, foolish accusations of the kind were brought into court) witchcraft. Some time after, he was named, together with the celebrated Antonio Cocchi, to make a catalogue of the library, begun by P</lagliabecchi and increased by Marni, duke Leopold, and others, which consisted of 40,000 volumes of printed books, and about 1100 volumes of manuscripts. It is to this nomination we are indebted for the five volumes of letters of famous men, as, during his employment in this capacity, he used to make extracts of the curious books which fell into his hands. On Micheli’s death in 1737, Mr. Targioni had inherited his Hortus Siccus, Mss. and collection of natural history, which last, however, he purchased, but at a very cheap rate, with his own money. This seemed to lay him under the necessity of publishing what his master had left behind him, and accordingly he had prepared the second part of the “Nova Plantarum Genera,” but not exactly in the manner in which Micheli himself would have published them; for, though the drawings were too good to be lost, as they have all the accuracy which distinguish the other works of the great naturalist, Targioni could not suffer the work to come forth with the Zoophytes and Keratophytes classed | among the plants, asMicheli had intended. Targioni therefore meant to have given the work another form. It was to be divided into two parts, the first of which would have contained the “Fucus’s, Algae, and Confervae;” and the second the “Zoophytes:” the first part was finished a week before Targioni’s death. Many of the plates are from drawings by Ottaviano Targioni, the son of John Targioni, who succeeded his father as reader of botany in the hospital of Sancta Maria Maggiore, a new establishment formed by the grand duke upon a liberal and extensive plan, in which ducal professors of medicine, anatomy, chemistry, physiology, surgery, &c. read gratis on the very spot where examples are at hand to confirm their doctrine. In 1739, Targioni was chosen member of the academy Naturae Curiosorum; and, in 1745, the Crusca gave him a public testimony of the value they set upon his style, by chusing him one of their members. In 1749, he was chosen member of the academy of Etruscans at Cortona, as he was of that of the Sepolti at Volterra in-4749. The academy of Botanophiles made him one of their body in 1757; as did that of practical agriculture at Udino in 1758. In 1771, he was chosen honorary member of the royal academy of sciences and belles lettres at Naples; and, finally, was named corresponding member of the royal society of medicine at Paris in 1780. It is much to be regretted that we cannot give an account of his manuscript works, several of which are known to be very important, as he was one of the most celebrated physicians of this time, and is known to have written a great deal on inoculation (of which he was one of the first promoters in Tuscany), putrid fevers, &c. &c. His printed works are extremely numerous; among the first of them was his “Thesis de prsestantia et usu Plantarum in medicina.” Pisis, 1734,“folio; and the latest, * Notizie degli Aggrandimenti delle Scienze Fisiche accaduti in Toscana nel corso di anni 60, nel secolo 17, Firenze,” 1780, 4 vols. 4to. He had just published the fourth volume of this last great work, on the improvement made in natural knowledge and natural philosophy in Tuscany in sixty years only of the 17th century, when he died of an atrophy in 1780. Mr. Targioni had a large cabinet of natural history, the foundation of which, as has been said, had been laid by Micheli. It consists of the minerals and fossils which are found in Tuscany, and the | Zoophytes and Hortus Siccus of Micheli. There is a drawer made at Amboyna, by order of Rumphius, containing all the sorts of wood of that island. Besides this, there is a great suite of animals and shells and petrified animal substances, particularly of the bones of elephants which are found in the environs of Florence. 1


Maty’s Review, vol. IV.—Haller Bibl. Bot.