FORSKAL, PETER (1736-1763), Swedish traveller and naturalist, was born in Kalmar in 1736. He studied at Göttingen, where he published a dissertation entitled Dubia de principiis philosophiae recentioris (1756). Thence he returned to his native country, which, however, he had to leave after the publication of a pamphlet entitled Pensées sur la liberté civile (1759). By Linnaeus he was recommended to Frederick V. of Denmark, who appointed him to accompany Carsten Niebuhr in an expedition to Arabia and Egypt in 1761. He died of the plague at Jerim in Arabia on the 11th of July 1763.
His friend and companion, Niebuhr, was entrusted with the care of editing his MSS., and published in 1775 Descriptiones animalium, avium, amphibiorum, piscium, insectorum, vermium, quae in itin. Orient. observavit Petrus Forskål. In the same year appeared also his account of the plants of Arabia Felix and of lower Egypt, under the title of Flora Aegyptiaco-Arabica.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)