- Suess , Eduard
- (1831–1914) Austrian geologistSuess, born the son of a businessman in London, was educated at the University of Prague. He began work, in 1852, in the Hofmuseum, Vienna, before moving to the University of Vienna in 1856 where he became professor of geology in 1861. Besides being an academic Suess served as a member of the Reichsrat (parliament) from 1872 to 1896. He was responsible for the provision of pure water to Vienna by the construction of an aqueduct in 1873 and the prevention of frequent flooding by the opening of the Danube canal in 1875.His major work as a geologist was his publication of Das Antlitz der Erde (1883–88), translated into English as The Face of the Earth (5 vols., 1904–24). This was not a particularly original work but acquired significance as being the great synthesis of the achievements of the later 19th-century geologists, geographers, paleontologists, and so on. He also published, in 1857, a classic work on the origin of the Alps.Suess was the first to propose the existence of the great early southern continent, Gondwanaland. He was impressed by the distribution of a fern, Glossopteris, present during the Carboniferous period. It was found in such widely scattered lands as Australia, India, South Africa, and South America. Suess therefore proposed that these lands had once formed part of one great continent, which he named for the Gonds, the supposed aboriginal Indians.
Scientists. Academic. 2011.