Gerhard Vom Rath - Encyclopedia


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GERHARD VOM RATH (1830-1888), German mineralogist, was born at Dinsburg in Prussia, on the 10th of August 1830. He was educated at Cologne, at Bonn University, and finally at Berlin, where he graduated Ph.D. in 1853. In 1856 he became assistant to NOggerath in the mineralogical museum at Bonn, and succeeded to the directorship in 1872. Meanwhile in 1863 he was appointed extraordinary professor of geology, and in 1872 he became professor of geology and mineralogy in the university at Bonn. He was distinguished for his accurate researches on mineralogy and crystallography; he described a great many new minerals, some of which were discovered by him, and he contributed largely to our knowledge of other minerals, notably in an essay on tridymite. He travelled much in southern Europe, Palestine and the United States, and wrote several essays on petrology, geology and physical geography, on earthquakes and on meteorites. He died at Coblenz on the 23rd of April 1888.

His separate publications included Ein Ausflug nach Kalabrien (1871); Der Monzoni im siideistlichen Tirol (1875); and Durch Italien and Griechenland nach dem Heiligen Land (2 vols., 1882). See Obituary with bibliography by Professor H. Laspeyres, in Sitzungsbericht des nat. Vereins der preussischen Rheinlande (1888).

fATHENOW, a town of Germany, in the Prussian province of Brandenburg, on the Havel, 45 m. N.W. of Berlin on the main railway to Hanover. Pop. (1905) 23,095, including the garrison. The Protestant church of St Mary and St Andrew, originally a basilica, and transformed to the Gothic style in 1517-1589, and the Roman Catholic church of St George, are noteworthy. Rathenow is known for its "Rathenow stones," bricks made of the clay of the Havel, and for its spectacles and optical instruments, which are exported.

Rathenow received its incorporation as a town in 1295. In 1 394 it was taken and partly destroyed by the archbishop of Magdeburg. It suffered much from the ravages of the Thirty Years' War, being occupied in turn by the Saxons and the Swedes, from whom in 1675 it was taken by the Brandenburgers, when most of the garrison were put to the sword.

See Wagener, Denkwi rdigkeiten der Stadt Rathenow (Berlin, 1903).

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