Georges Cuvier, French naturalist

Georges Cuvier, French naturalist

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Credit: LIBRARY OF CONGRESS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Georges Cuvier (1769-1832), French naturalist. Cuvier's full title and name is Baron Georges Leopold Chretien Frederic Dagobert Cuvier. Cuvier was educated in Stuttgart, Germany. He extended the work of Linnaeus in classification, most notably of molluscs and fishes. He also classified fossil mammals and reptiles, and developed the discipline of comparative anatomy to enable the study of extinct animals from their bones. He rejected evolutionary theory, believing in periodic catastrophes such as the Biblical flood as an end to existing life and the creation of new and better forms. He was made a peer in 1831. Published in Berlin in 1881, this is a photograph of a painting by Ernst Hader (1866-1911).

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