The Naturalist's Library, Vol XXXI. Foreign Butterflies
Engraved for the Naturalist’s Library
LONDON. HENRY G. BOHN.
YORK STREET, COVENT GARDEN.
SIR WILLIAM JARDINE, BART.
F.R.S.E., F.L.S., ETC., ETC.
BY JAMES DUNCAN,
W. H. LIZARS, 3, ST. JAMES’ SQUARE.
HENRY G. BOHN, YORK STREET, COVENT GARDEN.
MEMOIR OF LAMARCK.
MEMOIR OF LAMARCK.
Among the many eminent French naturalists, whoseloss to science we have so often had occasion tolament during the few past years, the above individualoccupied a conspicuous place. He was longknown in Paris by his public prelections, and hisnumerous writings have procured for him a highdegree of reputation throughout Europe. In thiscountry he is best known by his admirable works oninvertebrate animals, which may be said to haveformed a new era in the history of that extensivedepartment of the animal kingdom. But his studieshad a very extensive range; many of the mostinteresting inquiries which for ages have fixed theattention of mankind, were the subjects of hismeditation, and on most of them he formed anumber of definite ideas which he promulgatedunder the form of theories. Although these speculationsare of a highly fanciful description, and someof them greatly to be deprecated on account of theirhurtful tendency, yet they merit attention as theproductions of a mind remarkable for originality18and penetration, as well as for extensive and variedknowledge.
Jean Baptiste Pierre Antoine de Monet,generally called the Chevalier de Lamarck, wasdescended from an ancient family of some distinction,possessed of considerable property in theprovince of Bearn. He was born at Bezantin, asmall village in Picardy, on the 1st August, 1744.His fathers pecuniary resources having becomeconsiderably impaired, among other things by themaintenance of a numerous family, Jean Baptistebeing his eleventh child, he found it necessary toeducate his sons for some useful profession. Severalof them entered the army, and the subject of thepresent notice was destined for the church, whichat that period offered many lucrative and influentialappointments to the members of noble families.To qualify him for this office, he was sent to studyunder the Jesuits at Amiens, with whom he remainedfor a considerable time. From the first, however, heappears to have had some aversion to the professionselected for him by his father, and this was increasedto positive dislike by the mode of life which he wasobliged to lead at college. His active and excursivemind submitted with impatience to the punctiliousrestraints of college discipline, and the mechanicalroutine of studies prescribed indiscriminately to all,without reference to natural bias or acquired predilection.Most of his companions were activelyengaged in