James Jurin wrote to Peter Gribius about Leeuwenhoek's death

October 1, 1723

Jurin lamented Leeuwenhoek's death and asked Leeuwenhoek's daughter to send the instruments her father had bequeathed to the Royal Society.


Wellcome MS 6146; original in Latin

To the Reverend and Most Distinguished Man
Peter Gribius
The Most learned Pastor of the Church at Delft
Heartiest greetings ftom
James Jurin, Secr. R. S. Lond

Your letter to me, most learned Sir, bringing the most sad and bitter news of the death of that grand old man, an indefatigable investigator of nature, Anton van Leeuwenhoek, has come the more tardily into our hands, because the Royal Society has finished its meetings for the year and I have been outside London.

What a loss the Republic of Learning has suffered in that man, those well know who have carefully perused his writings, filled with the most elegant and useful discoveries. But none will feel more than the Royal Society, or grieve more, to whom I shall impart this sad news -- as soon as it resumes its meetings, which it will do in about three Weeks time.

Meanwhile, I beg that his dear lady, the worthy daughter of a great parent, may not hesitate to send me the case fitted with delicate instruments which he bequeathed to the Royal Society as a token of his highest regard. I ask you therefore to convey to her my greetings, and believe that I am your most devoted friend. Farewell.

Given at London Oct. 1st 1723