Concept

Arnold Henry Guyot

Summary
Arnold Henry Guyot (ˈgiːoʊ ) (September 28, 1807 - February 8, 1884) was a Swiss-American geologist and geographer. Guyot was born on September 28, 1807, at Boudevilliers, near Neuchâtel, Switzerland. He was educated at Chaux-de-Fonds, then at the college of Neuchâtel. In 1825, he went to Germany and resided in Karlsruhe where he met Louis Agassiz, the beginning of a lifelong friendship. From Karlsruhe he moved to Stuttgart, where he studied at the gymnasium. He returned to Neuchâtel in 1827. He determined to enter the ministry and started at the University of Berlin to attend lectures. While pursuing his studies, he also attended lectures on philosophy and natural science. His leisure time was spent in collecting shells and plants, and he received an entrée to the Berlin Botanical Garden from Humboldt. In 1835, he received the degree of PhD from Berlin. In 1838, at Agassiz's suggestion, he visited the Swiss glaciers and communicated the results of his six-week investigation to the Geological Society of France. He was the first to point out certain important observations relating to glacial motion and structure. Among other things he noted the more rapid flow of the center than of the sides, and the more rapid flow of the top than of the bottom of glaciers; described the laminated or ribboned structure of the glacial ice; and ascribed the movement of glaciers to a gradual molecular displacement rather than to a sliding of the ice mass as held by de Saussure. He subsequently collected important data concerning erratic boulders. In 1839, he became the colleague of Agassiz as professor of history and physical geography at the College of Neuchâtel (a.k.a. Neuchâtel Academy). The suspension of that institution in 1848 caused Guyot to emigrate, at Agassiz's instance, to the United States, where he settled in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He delivered a course of lectures at the Lowell Institute which were afterward published as Earth and Man (Boston 1849).
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