Brno celebrates Mendel’s 200th anniversary in a magnificent style

Photo: Mendel Festival 2022

Gregor Johann Mendel was born on July 20, 1822 to a German-speaking family in the Silesian-speaking region of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, now the Czech Republic. After becoming a monk, Mendel spent most of his life in Augustine. St. Thomas Monastery in Brno. So he conducted mating experiments with legumes and discovered the roles of dominant and recessive genes. This discovery later formed the core of genetics.

The celebration to pay homage to the city’s most famous citizens is magnificent-his face, name, and iconic green pea beans are everywhere-a square stone named after him and blessed by Pope Francis. About the sculptures commissioned to celebrate the city’s streetcars and his heritage in the main square, which was used and rebuilt in time for the anniversary. The monument depicting the sprouting beans is not far from the Augustine monastery where Mendel experimented.

Festival Mendel | Photo: Václav Šálek, ČTK

In the honor of Mendel, the Brno astronomical clock has issued a token glass ball in his memory – adorned with a red circle and the green letter “M”. A special banknote with a portrait of Mendel was issued. This is a small version of 200 banknotes sold for 25,000 banknotes per sheet.

Augustine of Hippo in Starebrno | Photo: Václav Šálek, ČTK

Throughout the week, concerts are held in spaces related to the Mendel and Augustine Society. On Friday, the Brno Philharmonic Orchestra will perform a concert at the Assumption Cathedral of the Virgin Mary and will be streamed live to an audience around the world.

An important part of the celebration focuses on science and Mendel’s laws. The Mendel Museum holds an exhibition on genetics, and the Mendel Genetics Conference at his eponymous university brings together 400 prominent researchers from around the world, including a few. There are Nobel laureates (Ada E. Jonas of Israel, Thomas Check of the University). Paul Nurse from Colorado and London, a geneticist and cell biologist).

A special banknote with a portrait of Mendel

Wednesday – Mendel’s Birthday – The city prepares an exhibition of fireworks in honor of him, and people work with Mendel in his memory with Mendel beer brewed by the Moravian brewery according to the old Augustine recipe. You can also have a toast at the university. Last but not least, Mendel’s legacy is celebrated with a unique book printed on handmade paper and bound in leather. This book contains copies of real documents and manuscripts. Mendel’s birth certificate, handwritten notes of sermons, and texts recording the experiments that made him famous. Brno celebrates Mendel’s 200th anniversary in a magnificent style

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