Classification and Species of Paramecium

  • Ralph Wichterman


In a detailed study of the writings of Antony van Leeuwenhoek, Dobell (1932) maintained that this discoverer of bacteria and protozoa observed members of the genus Paramecium as early as 1674 and 1677. The frontispiece shows him holding one of his hand-crafted, single-lens microscopes (see also Fig. 1.1). For illumination, Leeuwenhoek used the light of a candle or sunlight, sometimes in conjunction with magnifying mirrors, but he never divulged his method of observation, which appeared to be a closely guarded secret. In his letters to the Royal Society of London, he noted, however, that the objects in his microscope appeared bright and clear against a black background.


Mating Type Sibling Species Reference Specimen Buccal Cavity Isozyme Pattern 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ralph Wichterman
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Temple UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA
  2. 2.Marine Biological LaboratoryWoods HoleUSA

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