|Contribution||Reported existence of free-living microorganisms that were probably bacteria.|
|Notes||Included in the famous letter (in Dutch) of 9th October -- letter no.18; published in part in English in March 1677, and in full by Dobell, 1932. Brock 1961 reprints the 1677 partial translation. The organisms were seen (on 24 April 1676) in a pepper infusion, and Bardell (1982) notes that the discovery was made in the course of studies on the sense of taste (not in random examination of everything). The organisms were not illustrated, and their extremely small size is the basis for their retrospective recognition as bacteria. Leeuwenhoek said they were much smaller than the protozoon (Vorticella) he had already seen.|
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