(Hamburg, Germany 1599-Jena, Germany 1673)
German medical doctor, scientist, and botanist
He matriculated under his native Germanic nation at the University of Padua on September 26, 1622. Three years later in 1625, he received his doctorate in philosophy and medicine under the chair of Giovanni Colle and in the presence of Cesare Cremonini, “a quo fruit etiam insignitus (fruit from which it was signed).”
Following the illness and death of Adriaan van der Spieghel in 1625, Rolfinck performed two anatomical demonstrations in the atrium of the Palazzo Contarini Dal Zaffo in Padua, located on via S. Massimo. Rather than gaining the immediate succession of Spieghel, Rolfinck found a way to temporary block the continuation of teaching anatomy through ancient methods initiated by the chair of anatomy, Pompeo Caimo. Sometime between 1628 and 1629 Rolfinck left Padua and obtained the chair of anatomy at the University of Wittenburg, and then as professor at the University of Jena. During this time, he had been asked to return to Padua but refused the offer.
While at the University of Jena, he taught anatomy and botany as well as chemistry. In the same year, he published the second edition of Zacharias Brendel manual, Chimia in artis formam redacta, which Rolfinck had expanded and edited. His most important work in anatomy is the dissertation Dissertationes anatomicae methodo synthetica exaratae […] ad circulationem accommodatae (drawing anatomical methods of synthesis […] with a circular adaptation). It was in this work that he supported the understanding of the bodies’ circulatory system. During his time at the University of Jena, he founded an anatomical theatre, a botanical garden, and a chemical laboratory. Rolfinck’s work, De vegetabilibus, plantis, suffruticibus. fruticibus et arboribus in genere II, printed in 1670 is a widely respected among botanist
The restoration of the Werner Rolfinck canvas has been supported by Lundbeck Pharmaceuticals Italy S.p.A.