S2A3 Biographical Database of Southern African Science




Weber, Mrs Anna Antoinette (nee Van Bosse) (algology)

Born: 27 March 1852, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Died: October 1942, Eerbeck, Gelderland, The Netherlands.

Anna A. Weber (née van Bosse), Dutch algologist, was educated at the University of Amsterdam. Her second marriage, in 1883, was to the German zoologist Max W.C. Weber*. For several years after their marriage the Webers went to Tromsö, Norway, each summer, where she studied calcareous algae. In 1888 they went on an expedition to the Dutch East Indies and made extensive collections on the islands Java, Sumatra, Celebes and Flores (now part of Indonesia) and collaborated on an account of the green and yellow algae symbiotic in Spongilla, a genus of freshwater sponges.

Anna and her husband visited South Africa from July 1894 to January 1895, when she collected algae. During 1899-1900 they went on a second expedition to the East Indies, in the Dutch government vessel Siboga. She described the latter expedition in a Dutch work, Een jaar aan boord H.M. Siboga (Leiden, 1904), of which a German edition was also published. That same year she and M. Foslie published The Corallinaceae of the Siborg-expedition (Leiden, 1904), dealing with the coral-building red algae. A book by her on the seas of the East Indies (in Dutch, 1922) and her Liste des algues du Sibogo (Leiden, 1928, 533p) appeared many years later.

Anna Weber published extensively on algae in Dutch, French and English from the eighteen-eighties onwards. Her Monographie des Caulerpes (Leiden, 1898) dealt with a beautiful and large genus of green-seeded algae from warm climates. Later in her career 13 of her publications from the period 1890-1929 were collected in four volumes. In 1910 the University of Utrecht awarded her an honorary doctoral degree. The specimens she collected are housed in the Rijksherbarium, Leiden; the Natural History Museum, London; and other herbaria. The genus Weberella and several species were named after her.


List of sources:
Gunn, M. & Codd, L.E. Botanical exploration of southern Africa. Cape Town: Balkema, 1981.

National Union Catalogue, pre-1956 imprints. London: Mansell, 1968-1980.

Thompson, D'A W. Max Wilhelm Carl Weber, 1852-1937. Obituary Notices of Fellows of the Royal Society, 1938, Vol. 2(6), pp. 346-355.


Compiled by: C. Plug


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