Jakob Eduard Polak

Jakob Eduard Polak

Jakob Eduard Polak

Jakob Eduard Polak
Born 12 November 1818 (1818-11-12)
Groß-Morzin/Mořina, Bohemia
Died 8 October 1891 (1891-10-09) (aged 72)
Occupation Austrian physician

Jakob Eduard Polak (12 November 1818 in Mořina; – 8 October 1891 in Vienna) was an Austrian physician, born to a Jewish family from Bohemia, who played an important role in introducing modern medicine in Iran.[1]


Polak studied Medicine in Prague and Vienna. He was one of the six Austrian teachers invited by Amir Kabir, the Persian chief minister, as the instructors of Dar ul-Fonun, the first modern higher education institution in Iran. By his own account, he entered Iran on 24 November 1851, before the inauguration of the Dar ul-Fonun.

From 1851 to 1860, he taught medicine at Dar ul-Fonun. In the beginning, he taught in French and used a translator. Soon, the incompetence of the translators motivated him to learn Persian. He learned Persian in six months, and then taught his course in Persian.[2]

In 1885, he funded Otto Stapf, a Viennese Botanist, to undertake a botanical expedition to South- and Western Persia.[3] This led to the discovery of numerous new species of plants.

From 1855 to 1860, he served as personal physician of Naser-al-din Shah. In this capacity he was succeeded by French physician Joseph Désiré Tholozan.


Polak published his Persian experiences in: "Persien, das Land und seine Bewohner; Ethnograpische Schilderungen" (Leipzig, Brockhaus 1865), which belongs to the outstanding ethnographic works about 19th-century Iran.[4]

His other works include:

See also



  1. "POLAK, Jakob Eduard – Encyclopaedia Iranica". iranicaonline.org. Retrieved 2014-12-26.
  2. "Ekhtiar, Maryam, 1994, "The Dar al-Funun: Educational reform and cultural development in Qajar Iran", Ph.D Dissertation, New York University, USA."
  3. Franz Speta 2000, Warum Otto STAPF (1857–1933) Wien verlassen hat. Phyton (Horn, Austria) 40/1, 89-113, http://www.landesmuseum.at/pdf_frei_remote/PHY_40_1_0089-0113.pdf
  4. Polak, J.E. (1999). Persien: Das Land und Seine Bewohner. Ethnographische Schilderungen. Adegi Graphics LLC. ISBN 9780543970770. Retrieved 2014-12-26.

External links

This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 7/6/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.