The First living cell was discovered by?

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 9th, 2023

Anton Van Leeuwenhoek discovered the First Living Cells in 1674. In 1674, Anton von Leeuwenhoek was the first to identify free-living cells of algae in the water. He also invented the compound microscope. He noticed living cells & called them ‘animalcules.’ He observed red blood cells, bacteria, and sperm. The cell walls observed by Hook did not show the nucleus or other organelles found in most living cells. Van Leeuwenhoek probably also saw bacteria.

Discovery of the First Living Cell

In 1674, Anton Van Leeuwenhoek used an improved microscope to discover free-living algae Spirogyra cells in pond water. Antony Van Leeuwenhoek was the first person to discover living cells. He noticed living cells & called them ‘animalcules.’ Some minuscule ‘animalcules’ are now known as bacteria. The advent of the microscope facilitated the study of the finer details of a living cell.

Robert Hooke was the first scientist to create and utilise a microscope to study cells. What he noticed were cork cells, which he compared to honeycomb cells. Hooke, on the other hand, noticed the cell wall that remained of the dead plant tissue rather than active cells.

  • Anton Van Leeuwenhoek was the first to see free-living cells. He is commonly known as “the Father of Microbiology”.
  • A single high-quality lens with a concise focal length was all Anton Van Leeuwenhoek needed to create simple microscopes superior to compound microscopes at the time.
  • The reason behind it was that they reduced chromatic aberration issues.
  • Even though Anton Van Leeuwenhoek’s investigations lacked the formal structure of the scientific study, his keen observational skills allowed him to do important research.

Living cells were first discovered by which scientists – (a) Leeuwenhoek (b) Robert Hooke (c) Schwann (d) None of the above

Living cells were first discovered by the scientist Leeuwenhoek. He created the compound microscope to observe the free-living cells. He also observed bacteria using the microscope.

Robert Hooke

Robert Hooke was the first scientist to discover cells in 1665. With his homemade microscope, he observed tiny “honeycomb”-like compartments within a thin disc of cork.


The classical cell theory was proposed in 1839 by Theodor Schwann. This theory consists of three parts. The first part states that all living things are made of cells.

  • Part 2 states that the cell is the basic unit of life.
  • These parts are based on the conclusions reached in 1838 by Schwann and Matthias Schleiden comparing their observations in plant and animal cells. His third part, claiming that the
  • cells were derived from proliferated pre-existing cells, was described by Rudolf Virchow in 1858 as his Omnis cellula e cellula.


The first living cell was discovered by?

The first living cells were discovered by Anton Van Leeuwenhoek in 1674. The cells are the basic building blocks of all living things. It is the smallest unit that makes up all living organisms, can live on its own and makes tissues of the body. Leeuwenhoek is also known as the Father of Microbiology.

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