Edward Pierson Ramsay

Last updated

Edward Pierson Ramsay Ramsay Edward Pierson 1842-1916.jpg
Edward Pierson Ramsay

Edward Pierson Ramsay FRSEFLS LLD (3 December 1842 – 16 December 1916) was an Australian zoologist who specialised in ornithology. [1]

Contents

Early life

Ramsay was born in Dobroyd Estate, Long Cove, Sydney, and educated at St Mark's Collegiate School, The King's School, Parramatta. He studied medicine from 1863 to 1865 at the University of Sydney but did not graduate.

Career

Although he never had had any formal scientific training in zoology, Ramsay had a keen interest in natural history and published many papers. In 1863 he was treasurer of the Entomological Society of New South Wales, he contributed a paper on the "Oology of Australia" to the Philosophical Society in July 1865, and when this society was merged into the Royal Society of New South Wales, he was made a life member in recognition of the work he had done for the Philosophical Society.

In 1868 Ramsay joined with his brothers in a sugar-growing plantation in Queensland which, however, was not successful. Ramsay was one of the foundation members of the Linnean Society of New South Wales when it was formed in 1874, and a member of its council from the beginning until 1892. He became the first Australian-born Curator of the Australian Museum and built up a large variety of native weapons, dresses, utensils and ornaments illustrating the ethnology of Polynesia and Australia. From 1876 until 1894, when he had to resign due to his declining health, he published a Catalogue of the Australian Birds in the Australian Museum at Sydney in four parts.

In 1883 Ramsay traveled to London to attend the International Fisheries Exhibition. At that time he met Military Surgeon Francis Day who had collected fishes over several decades in India, Burma, Malaysia and other areas in southern Asia. Ramsay negotiated purchase a portion of Day's collection, including about 150 of Day's type specimens.

Presumably during the same trip to Britain he visited Edinburgh, as he was elected an Ordinary Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (requiring his physical presence) in April 1884. His proposers were Sir John Murray, Sir William Turner, James Geikie and William Carmichael McIntosh. [2]

Late life

After his resignation as Curator, Ramsay served the Australian Museum as "consulting ornithologist" until 1909. He died on 16 December because of carcinoma.

Legacy

Among organisms Ramsay described are the northern death adder (Acanthophis praelongus), [3] the pig-nosed turtle (Carettochelys insculpta), [3] the giant bandicoot (Peroryctes broadbenti ), the grey-headed robin (Heteromyias cinereifrons), The freshwater anchovy (Thryssa scratchleyi) and the Papuan king parrot (Alisterus chloropterus).


Ramsay is commemorated in the scientific names of two species of Australian snakes, Aspidites ramsayi and Austrelaps ramsayi . [4]

See also

Related Research Articles

Alfred, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha Duke of Edinburgh

Alfred reigned as Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha from 1893 to 1900. He was the second son and fourth child of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom and Albert, Prince Consort. He was known as the Duke of Edinburgh from 1866 until he succeeded his paternal uncle Ernest II as the reigning Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in the German Empire.

Andrew Ramsay (geologist) Scottish geologist

Sir Andrew Crombie Ramsay was a Scottish geologist.

Archibald Geikie

Sir Archibald Geikie was a Scottish geologist and writer.

Gerard Krefft

Johann Ludwig (Louis) Gerard Krefft, one of Australia's first and greatest zoologists and palaeontologists. In addition to many scientific papers, his books include The Snakes of Australia, A Catalogue of the Minerals and Rocks in the Australian Museum and A Short Guide to the Australian Fossil Remains in the Australian Museum. He published the scientific description of the Queensland Lungfish, considered a "living fossil".

Clement Hodgkinson

Clement Hodgkinson was a notable English naturalist, explorer and surveyor of Australia. He was Victorian Assistant Commissioner of Crown Lands and Survey from 1861 to 1874.

William Aitcheson Haswell was a Scottish-Australian zoologist specialising in crustaceans, winner of the 1915 Clarke Medal.

Woma python Species of snake

The woma python, also known commonly as Ramsay's python, the sand python, and simply the woma, is a species of snake in the family Pythonidae. The species is endemic to Australia. Once common throughout Western Australia, it has become critically endangered in some regions.

Edgar Ravenswood Waite

Edgar Ravenswood Waite was a British/Australian zoologist, ichthyologist, herpetologist, and ornithologist.

William John Macleay British naturalist

Sir William John Macleay was a Scottish-Australian politician, naturalist, zoologist, and herpetologist.

Joseph James Fletcher was an Australian biologist, winner of the 1921 Clarke Medal.

Edward Charles Stirling

Sir Edward Charles Stirling was an Australian anthropologist and the first professor of physiology at the University of Adelaide.

Archibald Liversidge

Archibald Liversidge FRS FRSE FRSNSW LLD was an English-born chemist and a co-founder of the Australasian Association for the Advancement of Science.

Ramsay Traquair

Dr Ramsay Heatley Traquair FRSE FRS LLD was a Scottish naturalist and palaeontologist who became a leading expert on fossil fish.

Yorkshire Philosophical Society Charitable learned society in the City of York, North Yorkshire, England

The Yorkshire Philosophical Society (YPS) is a charitable learned society which aims to promote the public understanding of the natural sciences, the social sciences, and the archaeology and history of York and Yorkshire.

James Charles Cox

James Charles Cox was an Australian physician and conchologist.

Archibald Smith

Archibald Smith of Jordanhill was a Scots-born barrister and amateur mathematician.

Highland copperhead Highly venomous snake native to southeastern Australia

The highland copperhead, also known as Ramsay's copperhead, is a species of venomous snake in the family Elapidae. The species is endemic to Australia.

Ringed brown snake Highly venomous snake native to Australia

The ringed brown snake is a species of venomous elapid snake native to a broad swathe of inland Australia, from western New South Wales and Queensland to Western Australia.

Yasmar

Yasmar is a heritage-listed house at 185 Parramatta Road, Haberfield, Inner West Council, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. It has variously served as a private home, Sunday school, children's court and juvenile remand and detention centre, and is now used by community groups and as a correctional services training facility. It was designed by John Bibb and built from 1856 to 1858. The surrounding site has also been known as Yasmar Hostel, Yasmar Detention Centre, Yasmar Child Welfare Home, Ashfield Remand Home, Yasmar Shelter and the Yasmar Juvenile Justice Centre. The property is owned by Land and Property Management Authority (LPMA). It was added to the New South Wales State Heritage Register on 18 February 2000.

James Stirton was a Scottish physician and one of Scotland's leading experts on cryptogamic botany. His investigations in bryology and lichenology earned him a world-wide reputation.

References

  1. Etheridge, R. (1917). "Obituary—Edward Pierson Ramsay, LL.D. Curator, 22nd September, 1874 to 31st December, 1894". Records of the Australian Museum. 11 (9): 205–217. doi: 10.3853/j.0067-1975.11.1917.916 . Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  2. Biographical Index of Former Fellows of the Royal Society of Edinburgh 1783–2002 (PDF). The Royal Society of Edinburgh. July 2006. ISBN   0-902-198-84-X.
  3. 1 2 "Ramsay". The Reptile Database. www.reptile-database.org.
  4. Beolens, Bo; Watkins, Michael; Grayson, Michael (2011). The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. xiii + 296 pp. ISBN   978-1-4214-0135-5. ("Ramsay", p. 216).