Carl Linnaeus (Latinized as Carolus Linnaeus, also known after his ennoblement as Carl von Linné (help·info), May 23 1707 – January 10, 1778) was a Swedish botanist, physician, and zoologist, who laid the foundations for the modern scheme of binomial nomenclature. He is known as the father of modern taxonomy, and is also considered one of the fathers of modern ecology.
Linnaeus was born in the countryside of Småland, in southern Sweden. His father was the first in his ancestry to adopt a permanent last name; prior to that, ancestors had used the patronymic naming system of Scandinavian countries. His father adopted the Latin-form name Linnaeus after a giant linden tree on the family homestead. Linnaeus got most of his higher education at Uppsala University and began giving lectures of botany there in 1730. He lived abroad between 1735–1738, where he studied and also published a first edition of his Systema Naturae in the Netherlands. He then returned to Sweden where he became professor of botany at Uppsala. In the 1740s, he was sent on several journeys through Sweden to find and classify plants and animals. In the 1750s and 60s, he continued to collect and classify animals, plants, and minerals, and published several volumes. At the time of his death, he was widely renowned throughout Europe as one of the most acclaimed scientists of the time.
The Swiss philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau sent him the message: "Tell him I know no greater man on earth." The German writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe wrote: "With the exception of Shakespeare and Spinoza, I know no one among the no longer living who has influenced me more strongly." Swedish author August Strindberg wrote: "Linnaeus was in reality a poet who happened to become a naturalist".