Emilio Chiovenda

Emilio Chiovenda prefetto
Emilio Chiovenda, director from 1936 to 1941

Emilio Chiovenda (Rome, 18 May 1871 – Bologna, 19 February 1941) received his degree in Natural Science in 1898 in Rome. Afterward he studied deeply the Italian Flora realizing a 20.000 sheets herbarium, nowadays preserved at the Bologna University Herbarium. The most of the specimens are from the Val d’Ossola area (Piemonte region), homeland of his parents, and from Lazio and Sicily. At the end of the XIX Century, he was appointed as Keeper at the Colonial Herbarium in Rome, in 1909 he went for a long travel to Eritrea and Ethiopia, studying the plants of that area and becoming a world famous expert in the Oriental Africa and Ruwenzori Flora. He wrote numerous works on that matter and he realized with Romualdo Pirotta, Professor of Botany at the University of Rome, the Flora della Colonia Eritrea (1903 and following). For those achievements, Mussolini would decorate him with a title, but he refused because of his firm belief antifascist. In 1915 he moved to Florence with the Colonial Herbarium.
In 1926 he was appointed as Full Professor and Director of the Botanic Garden till 1929.
In 1930 he become Headmaster of the Science Faculty at the University of Modena, after 6 year he moved to Bologna where he was Director of the Botanic Institute and Director of the Botanic Garden till the end of his career.
He was member of the Società Botanica Italiana and the Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei.


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