The original drawings of Étienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire's Histoire des crocodiliens renfermés dans le terrain oolithique


en Comptes Rendus Palevol 13 (7) - Pages 637-645

Published on 31 October 2014

From the end of 1830, Étienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire worked to prepare a book on thalattosuchians (Mesoeucrocodylia, Thalattosuchia) from the Jurassic of Normandy. This work, planned to be entitled “Histoire des crocodiliens renfermés dans le terrain oolithique”, was never completed. Searches in the archives of the central library of the “Muséum national d’histoire naturelle”, Paris, resulted in the rediscovery of the set of original drawings ordered by Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire to illustrate his book. These drawings, 21 in total, were executed by several artists working in the Muséum, including Jean-Charles Werner, Henri-Joseph Redouté, and Nicolas Hüet. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire offered this collection of drawings to the French Academy of Sciences in March 1834. These drawings were then donated to the library of the Muséum in November 1924 by Alfred Lacroix. This iconographic collection is of the highest importance for the history of palaeontology in France as it depicts unknown specimens that were destroyed during World War II.


History of palaeontology, Étienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, Teleosauridae, Thalattosuchia, Pierre de Caen, Bathonian, Normandy

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