The emergence of genetics from Festetics’ sheep through Mendel’s peas to Bateson’s chickens

Attila T. Szabó, Péter Poczai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

It is now common knowledge- but also a misbelief- that in 1905 William Bateson coined the term ` genetics' for the first time in his letter to Adam Sedgwick. This important term was already formulated 81 years ago in a paper written by a sheep- breeding noble called Imre ( Emmerich) Festetics, who still remains somewhat mysterious even today. The articles written by Festetics summarized the results of a series of lasting and elegant breeding experiments he had conducted on his own property. Selecting the best rams, Festetics had painstakingly crossed and backcrossed his sheep to reach betterwool quality. These experiments later turned out to reveal a better understanding of inheritance outlining genetics as a new branch of natural sciences.

Original languageEnglish
Article number63
JournalJournal of Genetics
Volume98
Issue number2
Number of pages7
ISSN0022-1333
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Fields of Science

  • 1184 Genetics, developmental biology, physiology

Projects

The history of genetics: pre-Mendelian research networks

Poczai, P., T. Szabó, A., Muszynski, L., Sekerák, J. & Santiago-Blay, J.

Finnish Museum of Natural History, University of Helsinki

03/04/201431/12/2020

Project: Research project

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