Georges Cuvier

Georges Cuvier

Birth
Montbeliard, Departement du Doubs, Franche-Comté, France
Death 13 May 1832 (aged 62)
Paris, City of Paris, Île-de-France, France
Burial Paris, City of Paris, Île-de-France, France
Plot Division 8
Memorial ID 7733 · View Source
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Naturalist, Anatomist. Born Johann Leopold Nicolaus Friedrich Kuefer the son of Anne Clémence Chatel and Jean George Cuvier, a retired Swiss military officer, at Montbéliard, Württemberg on the French-Swiss border. He attended school at the Carolinian Academy in Stuttgart until 1788. In 1795, he was appointed as an assistant to the professor of comparative anatomy at the Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle in Paris. In 1796, he began lecturing at the École Centrale du Pantheon, and in 1797, published his first study, “Tableau élémentaire de l’histoire naturelle des animaux” (Elementary Survey of the Natural History of Animals). In 1799, he became a professor of natural history at the College de France. Under Napoleon, he was appointed State Councilor and Inspector-General of public education. He believed there was no evidence for the evolution of organic forms, but rather for successive creations after catastrophic extinction events. Cuvier’s rock strata research with Alexandre Brongniart supported the work of William Smith in establishing one of paleontology’s most important principles: faunal succession. His first palaeontological paper, “Mémoires sur les espèces d'éléphants vivants et fossiles,” was published in 1800. His work is credited as being the foundation of modern vertebrate paleontology. In 1803, he was chosen as the the physical and natural sciences perpetual secretary for the National Institute. His best known work, “Le Règne Animal” (The Animal Kingdom), was published in 1817. After the restoration of the monarchy, he managed to preserve his status and in 1826, he was made grand officer of the Legion of Honour. He expanded Linneaun taxonomy by grouping classes into phyla, and arranged both fossils and living species in this taxonomy. He believed that it was function not hypothetical relationships that should form the basis of classification. His work established the basic principles of biostratigraphy. In 1831, he was created Baron Cuvier. He was elected chancellor of the university, and acted as interim president of the council of public instruction despite his personal prejudice against popularization or democratization of scientific knowledge. In early 1832, he was nominated to the ministry of the interior, but succumbed to cholera a few months later.

Bio by: Iola


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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Added: 18 Dec 1999
  • Find a Grave Memorial 7733
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Georges Cuvier (24 Aug 1769–13 May 1832), Find a Grave Memorial no. 7733, citing Cimetière du Père Lachaise, Paris, City of Paris, Île-de-France, France ; Maintained by Find A Grave .