Martens Friedrich

(1635 - 1699)

German doctor and naturalist, who conducted the first scientific observations of nature, wildlife and climate of Svalbard. He published his notes in 1675, and this book has become a reference work for many decades.

There are very few documents about the life of Martens. He worked as a medical assistant and doctor in Hamburg.

In 1671 Martens joined the journey on the whaling ship through the Norwegian Sea to Svalbard. The ship commanded by Captain Peter Peterson left Hamburg on April 15, 1671 and returned on August 21.

Martens made detailed notes of his observations and collected them in his book "The Spitsbergen or Greenland tourist description, made in 1671", which was published in 1675 by Gottfried Schulzen in Hamburg. The book contains observations of the ocean and weather, as well as descriptions of a number of arctic plants, birds and animals, as well as many drawings. The book Martens was later translated into several languages and published in Italian (1680), Dutch (1685), English (1694; as a section of the book) and French (1715; as an article) languages.

The book remained a reference work for many years and was quoted, among other things, by Konstantin Phipps in 1774 in "Journey to the North Pole ... 1773".

An island in the archipelago of the Seven Islands in the north of the Svalbard archipelago. Named in 1861 by the Swedish explorer Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld.


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