Double Fertilization in Flowering Plants

This site has two major components on it at this time:

This is a resource that has been developed in conjunction with the International Association for Sexual Plant Reproduction Research by Scott Russell (srussell<at>ou.edu).
1849: This is a monograph that described the origin of the embryo in flowering plants from a pre-existing cell inside the ovule (an egg cell) by a young Wilhelm Hofmeister, who presented technically gifted views of fertilization based entirely on cleared materials, as this predates paraffin sectioning. This copy is from the Stanford Library copied in collaboration with Google.
Hofmeister, W. 1849. Die Entshehung des Embryos der Phanerogamen. Eine Reihe Mikroskopische Untersuchungen. Verlag der Friedrich Hofmeister, Leipzig.
Hofmeister's original monograph

Three Classic Papers on Double Fertilization

1898: This is the short description of double fertilization from a 24 August 1898 meeting presentation given in Russia by Sergius Nawaschin reported in German in Botanisches Zentralblatt.

The definitive version is:
Nawaschin, S. (1898). Resultate einer Revision der Befruchtungsvorgänge bei Lilium martagon und Fritillaria tenella. Bull. Acad. Imp. Sci. St. Petersburg 9, 377-382.

Also available on the site:

  • Scanned title page
  • Scanned first page of text
  • Scanned second page of text
  • Original text in HTML
  • Nawashin's original text
    Guignard's original text 1899: This is the first description by Leon Guignard.

    The full reference is:
    Guignard L. (1899). Sur les anthérozoides et la double copulation sexualle chex les végétaux angiospermes. Rev. Gén. Bot. 11, 129-135.

    Also available on the site:

  • Scanned first page
  • Scanned figures
  • Original text in HTML
  • 1900: This is the first review on the earliest work on double fertilization, demonstrating the high interest given on this phenomenon. The paper by Ethel Sargant gives some of the first evolutionary viewpoints on double fertilization, which seem reasonably consistent with current models.

    The full reference is:
    Sargent E. (1900). Recent work on the results of fertilization in angiosperms. Annals of Botany 14: 689-712.

    Also available on the site:

  • Scanned first page of text
  • Original text in HTML
  • Sargant's original text


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