The Swiss animal catcher Peter Ryhiner (1920-1975) had christened the blue-eyed python Serata (Sanskrit for “beauty”) and brought it from the vicinity of Kolkata to the USA and later to Switzerland. The picture was taken by a Comet photographer on the occasion of the opening of the travel agency Jacky Maeder at Sihlstrasse 38 in Zurich.
After a 20-year hiatus, an insect graces our banknotes again – this time in a particularly beautiful context: light, which is omnipresent on the new, red 20 franc notes. They feature a prism splitting a beam of light into its colour spectrum and a white screen in front of the audience at the Locarno Film Festival. There is also a large iris, depicted
Max Bänninger’s collection of beetles is one of the most valuable – because very well documented and broad – and internationally renowned in the ETH entomological holdings. The bulk of his collection was acquired in Germany.
Conrad Gessner (1516-1565), a polymath and Zurich city doctor, lived at a time when traditional knowledge was joined by a wealth of new experiences. Not only did the discovery of America open up unknown places, but also unfamiliar flora and fauna. At the same time, many ancient
Willem Piso (1611-1678) served from 1636 to 1644 as a doctor in the Dutch colony in Brazil. As a pioneer of tropical medicine and pharmacology, he studied herbal medicine of the indigenous peoples and supported their health practices. In the jungle, he set out in search of medicinal plants and thus gained the reputation of being the first European to gain an understanding of the indigenous