King Otto of Greece Signed Letter to Professor Scouttetten Athens 1857


Interesting letter written in French from King Otto (1815-1867), the first modern King of Greece under the Convention of London. The letter is addressed to Professor Henri Joseph Scouttetten (1799-1871), dated 21st November/3rd December 1857, thanking him for sending a copy of his new work 'L'ozone', in which he discusses its influence on plant and animal life. 'Ozone', or, Chemical, physiological and medical meteoroloquic research on electrified oxygen has had twelve editions published between 1856 and 1972.

Scouttetten was a famed French military surgeon, and professor at the School of Medicine in Strassburg, who was sent to Berlin in 1831. He was a famous author on cholera and from 1852 he was chief physician at the military hospital in Metz . After his participation in the Crimea campaign (1854) he received a medal of the Legion of Honor.

"Professor H Scoutetten, I thank you most sincerely for having sent me your interesting publication on Ozone. It is a much more pleasant communication to me than your written work confirming the results of research done until now by yourself and by other scholars on a substance which, by means of its influence on plant and animal life, offers great scientific interest. Together with my thanks I send you this expression of my highest esteem.

Athens, 21 November
                /3 December


Mr. H. Scoutetten,
Professor of Medicine, Head Physician
of the Military Hospital of Metz"

He was a Bavarian prince who became King of Greece and reigned until he was deposed in 1862. The second son of King Ludwig I of Bavaria, Otto ascended the newly created throne of Greece while still a minor. His government was initially run by a three-man regency council made up of Bavarian court officials. Upon reaching his majority, Otto removed the regents when they proved unpopular with the people and he ruled as an absolute monarch. Eventually his subjects' demands for a Constitution proved overwhelming, and in the face of an armed but bloodless insurrection Otto in 1843 granted a constitution. However he rigged elections using fraud and terror.

Throughout his reign Otto was unable to resolve Greece's poverty and prevent economic meddling from outside. Greek politics in this era was based on affiliations with the three Great Powers, and Otto's ability to maintain the support of the powers was key to his remaining in power. To remain strong, Otto had to play the interests of each of the Great Powers' Greek adherents against the others, while not aggravating the Great Powers. When Greece was blockaded by the British Royal Navy in 1850 and again in 1854, to stop Greece from attacking the Ottoman Empire during the Crimean War, Otto's standing amongst Greeks suffered. As a result, there was an assassination attempt on the Queen, and finally in 1862 Otto was deposed while in the countryside. He died in exile in Bavaria in 1867.

Size: 21.5 x 18 cm approx

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