Fuchs, Leonhart (Fuchsius Leonhardus) 1501-1566
Fuchs matriculated from the University in his 13th year. At first he became a teacher and finally a physician. As a practitioner and teacher he was in great demand and acquired a widespread reputation. He eventually became a Lutheran. In 1535, he became Professor of Medicine in the newly organized University of Tubingen where he remained until his death.
The plants in his herbal, De Historia Stirpium, 1542, are illustrated by woodcuts, one genus occupying a full page. They were beautifully drawn in outline from nature with no shading. The book was intended for the common people so Latin names were omitted. Three hundred, forty-three chapters each involving one genus were included. Four hundred plants native to Germany and one hundred of foreign origin were depicted. Among these were the first known pictures of pumpkin and Indian corn from America.
Fuchs examined the herbal of Brunfels as well as the botanical text of Bock, but his descriptions were largely his own. The woodcuts were excellent. They were produced by two excellent artists and a fine engraver. These illustrations were frequently copied until the end of the 18th Century and even to the present. Dioscorides was his final authority.