Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Fossil dealers, the practices of comparative anatomy and British diplomacy in Latin America, 1820–1840

  • IRINA PODGORNY (a1)
Abstract

This paper traces the trade routes of South American fossil mammal bones in the 1830s, thus elaborating both local and intercontinental networks that ascribed new meanings to objects with little intrinsic value. It analyses the role of British consuls, natural-history dealers, administrative instructions and naturalists, who took the bones from the garbage pits of ranches outside Buenos Aires and delivered them into the hands of anatomists. For several years, the European debates on the anatomy of Megatherium were shaped by the arrival in London of a small living mammal and the ideas and evidence received from Montevideo on the existence of huge fossil bony armours. These debates culminated late in 1838 in the creation of the extinct genus Glyptodon by Richard Owen as a result of the exchange of letters, objects and depictions, and a series of contingent events. Based on primary sources and South American scholarship, this paper aims to contribute to the current debates among historians of science about the mobility of knowledge, as well as presenting the condition that made Charles Darwin's work possible.

Copyright
References
Hide All

1 Gallo, Klaus, De la invasión al reconocimiento: Gran Bretaña y el Río de la Plata, 1806–1826, Buenos Aires: A-Z, 1994; Hanon, Maxine, Diccionario de Británicos en Buenos Aires, primera época, Buenos Aires: Gutten Press, 2005; Shuttleworth Hills, Nina Kay, A Life of Sir Woodbine Parish (1796–1882), London: Smith, Elder & Co, 1910.

2 Trelles, Manuel R., ‘El Padre Fray Manuel Torres’, Revista de la Biblioteca Pública de Buenos Aires (1882) 4, pp. 439448.

3 Trelles, op. cit. (2), p. 444.

4 López Piñero, José M. and Glick, Thomas, El megaterio de Bru y el Presidente Jefferson: una relación insospechada en los albores de la paleontología, Valencia: Instituto de Estudios Documentales e Históricos sobre la Ciencia, 1993; Pelayo, Francisco, Del diluvio al megaterio: Los orígenes de la paleontología en España, Madrid: CSIC, 1996; Irina Podgorny, ‘De ángeles, gigantes y megaterios: Saber, dinero y honor en la paleontología en el Plata’, in Ricardo Salvatore (ed.), Los lugares del saber: contextos locales y redes transnacionales en la formación del conocimiento moderno, Rosario: Beatriz Viterbo, 2007, pp. 125–157; Rozzi, Fernando Ramírez and Podgorny, I., ‘La metamorfosis del megaterio’, Ciencia Hoy (2001) 11(61), pp. 1219; Rudwick, Martin J.S., Georges Cuvier, Fossil Bones, and Geological Catastrophes: New Translations & Interpretations of the Primary Texts, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1997; Juan Pimentel condensed this bibliography in a recent essay included in Schaffer, Simon, Delbourgo, James and Raj, Kapil (eds.), The Brokered World: Go-Betweens and Global Intelligence, 1770–1820, Sagamore Beach: Science History Publications, 2009.

5 Knapp, Sandra, ‘Fact and fantasy’, Nature (2002) 415(6871), p. 479.

6 Martin Rudwick, ‘Recherches sur les ossements fossiles: Georges Cuvier et la collecte d'alliés internationaux’, in C. Blanckaert et al. (eds.), Le Muséum au premier siècle de son histoire, Paris: Muséum national d'histoire naturelle, 1997, pp. 591–606; Margaret O. Meredith, ‘Friendship and knowledge: correspondence and communication in Northern trans-Atlantic natural history, 1780–1850’, in Schaffer, Delbourgo and Raj, op. cit. (4), pp. 151–191.

7 Roberts, Lissa, ‘Situating science in global history: local exchanges and networks of circulation’, Itinerario (2009) 33, pp. 930; Safier, Neil, ‘Global knowledge on the move: itineraries, Amerindian narratives, and deep histories of science’, Isis (2010) 101, pp. 133145; Secord, James A., ‘Knowledge in transit’, Isis (2004) 95, pp. 654672.

8 Compare with ‘Introduction’, in Schaffer, Delbourgo and Raj, op. cit. (4).

9 Roberts, op. cit. (7).

10 Mawe, John, Travels in the Interior of Brazil, Particularly in the Gold and Diamond Districts of that Country, by Authority of the Prince Regent of Portugal: Including a Voyage to the Rio de Le Plata and an Historical Sketch of the Revolution of Buenos Ayres, London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme and Brown, 1812; see also Torrens, Hugh S., ‘The early life and geological work of John Mawe, 1766–1829, and a note on his travels in Brazil’, Bulletin of the Peak District Mines Historical Society (1992) 11, pp. 267271. On the ‘enlightened priests’ see Stéfano, Roberto Di, El púlpito y la plaza: clero, sociedad y política de la monarquía católica a la república rosista, Buenos Aires: Siglo Veintiuno Editores, 2004; Podgorny, op. cit. (4).

11 Dámaso Larrañaga to Bartolomé Muñoz, Montevideo, 22 June 1808, in Camusso, Rafael Algorta, El Padre Dámaso Antonio Larrañaga: Apuntes para su Biografía, Montevideo: Barreiro y Ramos, 1922, p. 32; see also Di Stéfano, op. cit. (10).

12 Bose, Walter, ‘Las comunicaciones interprovinciales en Cuyo, Centro y Noroeste Argentino, 1852–1875’, Separata del IV Congreso Nacional y Regional de Historia Argentina, 1977, Buenos Aires: Academia Nacional de la Historia, 1986; Revello, José Torre, ‘Bibliotecas en el Buenos Aires antiguo desde 1729 hasta la inauguración de la Biblioteca Pública en 1812’, Revista de Historia de América (1965) 59, pp. 1148; Castellanos, Alfredo, ‘La biblioteca científica de Larrañaga’, Revista Histórica (1948) 16(46–48), pp. 589626; on the commerce of books see Vera, Eugenia Roldán, The British Book Trade and Spanish American Independence: Education and Knowledge Transmission in Transcontinental Perspective, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2003.

13 Mawe, John, The Voyager's Companion, or Shell Collector's Pilot: With Directions Where to Find the Finest Shells, London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, Brown and Green, 1825.

14 Gelman, Jorge, Un Funcionario en busca del Estado: Pedro Andrés García y la cuestión agraria bonaerense, 1810–1822, Buenos Aires: Universidad Nacional de Quilmes, 1997.

15 Podgorny, Irina and Lopes, M.M., El Desierto en una vitrina; museos e historia natural en la Argentina, 1810–1890, México: Limusa, 2008.

16 Algorta Camusso, op. cit. (11); Lopes, Maria Margaret and Varela, A., ‘Viagens, tremores e conchas: aspectos da natureza da América em escritos de José Bonifácio de Andrada e Silva, José Hipólito Unanúe e Dámaso Antonio Larrañaga’, Boletin Museu Paraense Emilío Goeldi: Ciências Humanas (2010) 5, pp. 227242.

17 Podgorny and Lopes, op. cit. (15); Podgorny, op. cit. (4); Bell, Stephen, A Life in Shadow: Aimé Bonpland in Southern South America, 1817–1858, Palo Alto: Stanford University Press, 2010.

18 Aimé Bonpland to Dámaso Larrañaga, 13 February 1818, Escritos de don Dámaso Antonio Larrañaga, vol. 3, Montevideo: Imprenta Nacional, 1924, p. 258.

19 Beck, Eugenio, ‘Un benemérito de las ciencias en el Río de la Plata: Bartolomé Doroteo Muñoz (1831–1931)’, Revista de la Sociedad Amigos de la Arqueología, Montevideo (1931) 5, pp. 5290.

20 Dámaso Larrañaga to Bartolomé Muñoz, in Algorta Camusso, op. cit. (11), pp. 31–32; see also Podgorny and Lopes, op. cit. (15), pp. 37–43.

21 ‘Megaterium’, July 1814, in ‘Diario de Historia Natural’, Escritos de don Dámaso Antonio Larrañaga, vol. 1, Montevideo: Imprenta Nacional, 1922, p. 4.

22 ‘This quadruped, in its characters, taken together, differs from all known animals, and each of its bones, considered apart, also differs from the corresponding bones of all known animals. This results from a detailed comparison of the skeleton with that of other animals, and will readily appear to those who are conversant in such researches; for none of the animals which approach it in bulk have either pointed claws, or similarly formed head, shoulder blades, clavicles, pelvis, or limbs', from ‘Mammalia’, Encyclopaedia Britannica, or, a Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, and Miscellaneous Literature, 4th edn, Edinburgh, 1810, vol. 12, p. 464.

23 Ramírez Rozzi and Podgorny, op. cit. (4); ‘Megaterium’, op. cit. (21).

24 Lorelai Kury, ‘La politique des voyages et la culture scientifique d'Auguste de Saint-Hilaire’, in Yves Laissus (ed.), Les naturalistes français en Amérique du sud VXIe–XIXe siècles, Paris: CTHS, 1995, pp. 234–245; Urban, Ignaz, ‘Biographischen Skizzen, Friedrich Sellow (1789–1831)’, Botanische Jahrbücher für Systematik, Pflanzengeschichte und Pflanzengeographie (1893) 17, pp. 177198; Herter, Wilhem, ‘Auf den Spuren der Naturforscher Sellow und Saint-Hilaire’, Botanische Jahrbücher für Systematik, Pflanzengeschichte und Pflanzengeographie (1945) 74, pp. 119149; Weiss, Christian, ‘Über das südliche Ende des Gebirgszuges von Brasilien in der Provinz San Pedro und der Banda Oriental oder dem Staate von Monte Video: nach den Sammlungen des Herrn Fr. Sellows’, Abhandlungen der Königlich Preussischen Akademie der Wissenschaften von 1827 (1830), pp. 217293, 276.

25 ‘Note sur le Megaterium de Cuvier, l'Hydromis-, et une variété nouvelle de Maïs. (Extrait d'une lettre de D. Damasio- Larranhaga, de Monte-Video, à M. Auguste de Saint-Hilaire)’, Bulletin des sciences par la Société philomatique de Paris (1823), p. 83. ‘Scute’ refers to the bony external plates or scales, currently known as ‘osteoderms’.

26 López Piñero, José M., ‘Juan Bautista Bru (1740–1799) and the Description of the Genus Megatherium’, Journal of the History of Biology (1988) 21, 1, pp. 147163; Podgorny, Irina, ‘The reliablity of the ruins’, Journal of Spanish Cultural Studies (2007) 8(2), pp. 213233.

27 Desmarest, Anselm, ‘Megathérium’, in Dictionnaire des sciences naturelles; dans lequel on traite méthodiquement des différens êtres de la nature, considérés soit en eux-mêmes, d'après l’état actuel de nos connoissances, soit relativement a l'utilité qu'en peuvent retirer la médecine, l'agriculture, le commerce et les arts, vol. 29: MANB–MELI, Strasbourg: F.G. Levrault, 1823, p. 471.

28 Pander, Christian and d'Alton, Eduard, Das Riesenfaulthier Bradypus giganteus abgebildet, beschrieben und mit den verwandten Geschlechtern verglichen, Bonn, 1821; cf. Schmitt, Stéphane, ‘From eggs to fossils: epigenesis and transformation of species in Pander's biology’, International Journal of Developmental Biology (2005) 49, pp. 18. This connection between extinct and extant forms at the generic level was also part of Larrañaga's view with ‘his extinct Dasypus’.

29 Cignoli, Francisco, La sanidad y el cuerpo médico de los ejércitos libertadores, Guerra de la Independencia (1810–1828), Rosario: Editorial Rosario, 1951.

30 Harlan, Richard, ‘Description of a new Genus of Mammiferous Quadrupeds, of the Order Edentata’, Annals of the Lyceum of Natural History of New York (1825) 6, pp. 235246.

31 Compare with Sellers, Charles Coleman, Mr. Peale's Museum: Charles Willson Peale and the First Popular Museum of Natural Science and Art, New York: Norton, 1980.

32 Mitchill, Samuel, ‘Observations on the teeth of the Megatherium recently discovered in the United States’, Annals of the Lyceum of Natural History of NewYork (1824) 1, pp. 5861; Cooper, William, ‘On the Remains of the Megatherium recently discovered in Georgia’, Annals of the Lyceum of Natural History of NewYork (1824) 1, pp. 114124.

33 Desmarest, A., ‘Description d'un nouveau genre de mammifères quadrupèdes de l'ordre des édentés; par M. R Harlan. (Ann. Lyc. of nat. hist. of New-York, févr. 1825.)’, Bulletin des sciences naturelles et de géologie (1825) 56, p. 369.

34 Parish, Woodbine, Buenos Ayres and the Provinces of the Rio de la Plata: Their Present State, Trade, and Debt; with Some Account from Original Documents of the Progress of Geographical Discovery in Those Parts of South America during the Last Sixty Years, London: J. Murray, 1839, p. xv.

35 Gillies compiled information on plants, instructed local women in the arts of botany, and acquired a good command of Spanish, so much so that in 1825 Parish nominated him for vice-consul in Mendoza. See Gibbs, F.W., ‘John Gillies, M.D., Traveller and Botanist, 1792–1834’, Notes and Records of the Royal Society of London (1951) 9, pp. 115136.

36 Yarrell, William, ‘On the osteology of the Chlamyphorus truncatus of Dr. Harlan’, Zoological Journal (1828) 3, pp. 544553.

37 Rupke, Nicolaas, William Buckland: The Great Chain of History, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1983.

38 Edouard Brygoo, ‘La zoologie du voyage d'Alcide d'Orbigny’, in Laissus, op. cit. (24), pp. 261–275.

39 ‘Account of the Discovery of the Remains of several Skeletons of the Mastodon (corrected by W. Clift as “i.e. Megatherium”,) in the Province of Buenos Ayres in South America by Woodbine Parish, Esq. H. Ms.' Chargé d'Affaires and Consul General at Buenos Ayres’. Copy of Mr. Parish's paper on the Megatherium, with the permission of the Author, June 1, 1832, MS, The Natural History Museum Archives (London) (hereafter NHM). Words transcribed as written in the document.

40 de Rozas, Juan Manuel, Instrucciones para los mayordomos ó encargados de estancias, o Instrucciones para los ayudantes recorredores de las estancias que deberán cumplir con puntualidad y delicadeza, con una noticia preliminar de Adolfo Saldías, 2nd edn, Buenos Aires: Empresa reimpresora de Publicaciones Americanas, 1908.

41 Rozas, op. cit. (40), pp. 28 (Basura) and 31 (osamentas), my translation.

42 Parish, op. cit. (39).

43 Georges Boulinier, ‘Les leçons du tatou: d'Orbigny et Darwin en Amérique du Sud’, in Laissus, op. cit. (24), pp. 277–290.

44 Podgorny, Irina, ‘Traders in the past: Teodoro Vilardebó, Pedro de Angelis and the trade of bones and documents in the Río de la Plata, 1830–1850’, Circumscribere: International Journal for the History of Science (2011), accessed 27 September 2011, available at http://revistas.pucsp.br/index.php/circumhc/article/view/5272.

45 Parish, op. cit. (39).

46 Charles Darwin and the Voyage of The Beagle, edited with an Introduction by Nora Barlow, London: Pilot Press, 1945, p. 168.

47 Parish, op. cit. (39).

48 Parish, op. cit. (39).

49 Parish, op. cit. (39), underlining in original.

50 Clift, William, ‘Notice on the Megatherium brought from Buenos Ayres by Woodbine Parish, Esq. FRS’, Transactions of the Geological Society (1835) 3, p. 437.

51 Podgorny, Irina, ‘El camino de los fósiles: Las colecciones de mamíferos pampeanos en los museos ingleses y franceses’, Asclepio (2001) 53, 2, pp. 97116.

52 Weiss, op. cit. (24), p. 277.

53 Saint-Hilaire, Geoffroy, ‘Des recherches faites dans les carrières du calcaire oolithique de Caen, ayant donné lieu à la découverte de plusieurs beaux échantillons et de nouvelles espèces de téléosaures’, 9 May 1831, Mémoires de l'Académie royale des sciences de l'Institut de France (1833) 12, p. 55.

54 Clift, op. cit. (50); see also ‘Historia Natural’, La Gaceta Mercantil, 10 October 1832; ‘Inventario de los documentos de la donación Segurola recibidos por el Director de la Biblioteca Nacional’, Revista de la Biblioteca Nacional (1940) 4, p. 21. On Clift see Sloan, Phillip, ‘Clift, William (1775–1849)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004.

55 Podgorny, op. cit. (44).

56 Rudwick, Martin J.S., ‘Caricature as a source for the history of science: De la Beche's anti-Lyellian sketches of 1831’, Isis (1975) 66, pp. 534560.

57 Clift, op. cit. (50), p. 468.

58 Parish, op. cit. (39).

59 d'Alton, Eduard, ‘Über die von dem verstorbener Herrn Sellow aus der Banda Oriental mitgebrachten fossilen Panzerfragmente und die dazu gehörigen Knochen-Überreste’, Abhandlungen der Königlichen Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Berlin aus dem Jahre 1833 (1835), pp. 369424.

60 D'Alton, op. cit. (59), p. 385.

61 ‘Etudes des sciences naturelles: Paris avant les hommes’, Musée des familles: lectures du soir (1836) 3, p. 276.

62 Buckland, William, Geology and Mineralogy Considered with Reference to Natural Theology, London: William Pickering, 1836, pp. 159160.

63 Buckland, op. cit. (62), note at p. 154 and note at p. 160.

64 Buckland, op. cit. (62), note at pp. 160–161.

65 Buckland, op. cit. (62), note at p. 162.

66 Charles Darwin to the chairman of the Board of Curators of the Royal College of Surgeons, 19 December 1836, RCS (Curators Deed Box).

67 Freeman, R., The Works of Charles Darwin: An Annotated Bibliographical Handlist, Folkestone: Dawson, 1977; Herbert, Sandra, Charles Darwin, Geologist, Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2005.

68 Owen, Richard, ‘Description of a Tooth and Part of the Skeleton of the Glyptodon clavipes, a large Quadruped of the Edentate Order, to which belongs the Tessellated Bony Armour described and figured by Mr. Clift in the former Volume of the Transactions of the Geological Society; with a consideration of the question whether the Megatherium possessed an analogous Dermal Armour’, read 23 March 1839, Transactions of the Geological Society of London (1841) 2, pp. 81106.

69 Rupke, Nicolaas, Richard Owen: Victorian Naturalist, New Haven: Yale University Press, 1994.

70 Podgorny, op. cit. (44).

71 Herbert, op. cit. (67); Podgorny, op. cit. (51).

72 Sarjeant, W.A.S. and Delair, J.B., ‘An Irishman in Cuvier's laboratory: the letters of Joseph Pentland, 1820–1832’, Bulletin of the British Museum of Natural History, Historical Series (1979) 6, pp. 245319; W.A.S. Sarjeant, ‘Joseph Pentland's early geological and geographical work in Bolivia and Peru’, in Silvia Figueiroa and M. Lopes (eds.), Geological Sciences in Latin America: Scientific Relations and Exchanges, Campinas: Universidad de Campinas, 1993, pp. 11–27; Phillip Sloan, ‘Le Muséum de Paris vient à Londres’, in Blanckaert et al., op. cit. (6), pp. 607–634.

73 William Clift to the Trustees of the Bristish Museum, 14 February 1835, NHM, Fossil Edents S. America (copies of letters) LMSS Cli BRN 286475 (subsequently FE).

74 In the eighteenth century, Jesuit Father Thomas Falkner referred ‘to the shell of an animal composed of hexagonal bones’; see also Falkner, Thomas, Description of Patagonia and the Adjoining Parts of South America, Hertford, 1774, p. 55 (Facsimile of 1954). A Spanish translation had been published by Pedro de Angelis in Buenos Aires in 1835 and reviewed by Parish in the British journals in 1837.

75 See Rudwick, Martin, Bursting the Limits of Time: The Reconstruction of Geohistory in the Age of Revolution, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005.

76 de Blainville, Henri, ‘Mémoire sur l'ancienneté des mammifères du sous-ordre des Édentés terrestres à la surface du globe’, Comptes rendus des séances de l'académie des sciences (1839) 8, p. 46, séance du 21 Janvier, pp. 65–69; séance du l 4 Février, p. 139; see also Appel, Toby, ‘Henri de Blainville and the animal series: a nineteenth-century chain of being’, Journal of the History of Biology (1980) 13, pp. 291319; and Bernard Balan, ‘Du Dinotherium: un débat au Muséum (1829–1844)’, in Blanckaert et al., op. cit. (6), pp. 277–293.

77 Joseph Barclay Pentland Esq. to Woodbine Parish Esq. (on the Shell of Megatherium. Query Dasypus), 17 December 1835, received December 22nd, NHM, FE.

78 Copy of Mr. Parish's answer to Mr. Pentland's letter, 23 December 1835, NHM, FE.

79 Mr. Pentland to Woodbine Parish Esq., 4 January 1836. NHM, FE, underlining in original.

80 Dr. Buckland to Woodbine Parish Esq., 9 January 1836. NHM, FE.

81 Rudwick and Secord have already stressed the importance of oral communication in geology, referring in particular to the debates that characterized English geological circles: this case shows that for Buckland it was sufficient to have heard of the evidence from a reliable correspondent. Rudwick, Martin, The Great Devonian Controversy: The Shaping of Scientific Knowledge among Gentlemanly Specialists, Chicago: Chicago University Press, 1985; Secord, James, Controversy in Victorian Geology: The Cambrian–Silurian Dispute, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1986.

82 Buckland, William and Buckland, Francis T., Geology and Mineralogy as Exhibiting the Power, Wisdom, and Goodness of God, London: Bell & Daldy, 1869, p. 142.

83 Owen, Richard, Zoology of the Voyage of the H.M.S. Beagle, during the Years 1832 to 1836, part 1: Fossil Mammalia, London: Smith, Elder and Co., 1838, p. 15.

84 Fernández Arlaud, S., ‘Los trabajos científicos de Nicolás Descalzi durante la campaña de Rosas al sur, 1833–1834’, Historiografía (1976) 2, pp. 746.

85 Copy of an extract of a letter from Mr. Griffiths, H.M. Consul at Buenos Aires, to Sir Woodbine Parish, Buenos Ayres, 12 November 1838, NHM, copied by Clift on 12 February 1839. See Chiaramonte, José C., Mercaderes del Litoral: Economía y sociedad en la provincia de Corrientes, primera mitad del siglo XIX, Buenos Aires: FCE, 1991.

86 Manuscript notes on Glyptodon 1838, OC 78, Owen Collection, NHM, Notice of an extinct quadruped found in a fossil state in the month of September last in the Province of Buenos Ayres in South America, by R. Owen, December 1838. Accompanied by a drawing, representing the entire animal as it appeared when found and section of the teeth, one of them has been received.

87 Müller, Johannes, ‘Bemerkung über die Fußknochen des fossilen Gürtelthiers, Glyptodon clavipes Ow.’, Königliche Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Berlin (1849), pp. 3031.

88 Lopes, M.M., ‘Cenas de tempos profundos: ossos, viagens, memórias nas culturas da natureza no Brasil’, História, ciência: saúde-Manguinhos (2008) 15(3), pp. 615634.

89 ‘M. d'Orbigny communique l'extrait d'une lettre de M. Th. Vilardebo, directeur du Muséum de Montevideo’, Bulletin de la Société Géologique de France (1840) 11, pp. 156–160; the translation of the notes published in the newspapers of Montevideo did not include the names either of the discoverers or of those to whom the bones were given; cf. ‘Summary of account of fossil bones found near Montevideo in 1838 and now in the museum of that city’, NHM, FE, and ‘Informe presentado a la Comisión de Biblioteca y Museo por los miembros de ella, Dr. Bernardo Berro y Dr. Teodoro M, Vilardebó, sobre el reciente descubrimiento de un animal fósil, en el Partido de Piedra Sola, Departamento de Colonia, El Universal, in Rafael Schiaffino, Vida y obra de Teodoro M. Vilardebó (1803–1857): Médico y Naturalista: Higienista e Historiador, Montevideo: El siglo ilustrado, 1840, pp. 221–234.

90 Podgorny, op. cit. (44).

91 Huxley, Thomas, ‘On the osteology of the genus Glyptodon’, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London (1865) 155, p. 43.

92 Cuvier, Georges, Recherches sur les ossemens fossils, 8, first part, 4th edn, Paris: Edmond d'Ocagne, 1836, note by Laurillard, p. 368.

93 Richard Owen to Charles Laurillard, 15 March 1839, MS 638, Muséum national d'histoire naturelle Archives (hereafter MNHN).

94 Pentland, Joseph B., ‘Animaux fossiles: Extrait d'une lettre de M. Pentland à M. Arago’, Compte rendus hebdomadaires de l'Académie des sciences (1839) 9, p. 363.

95 Richard Owen to Charles Laurillard, 16 December 1843, MS 638 MNHN.

The writing of this article is indebted to The Americas' Mighty Skeletons project (Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Dept. 3, 2009–2010) and PIP 0116 CONICET The Commercialization of Nature. Earlier versions of this paper were discussed in January 2010 at the MPI Department's colloquium and at the Cisneros Seminar in the Material Cultures of the Iberoamerican World, Rethinking Material Culture from the Americas: The Study of Material Culture in 18th- and 19th-Century Mexico, Peru and Argentina held at the Bard Graduate Centre, New York City, in October 2010. I am grateful to the comments notably by two anonymous referees, Jon Agar, Peter Miller, Alessandra Russo and Barbara Wittmann. I thank Nélia Dias, Susana V. García, Maria Margaret Lopes, Maribel Martínez Navarrete, Javier Ordóñez, Lewis Pyenson, Guillermo Ranea, Hans-Jörg Rheinberger and Wolfgang Schäffner for friendly advice. This article benefited from the professional aid of Trish Hatton, MPI Interlibrary Loan Service (Ellen Garske and Ruth Kessentini), librarians and archivists from the Biblioteca Nacional (Argentina), the Muséum national d'histoire naturelle, the Natural History Museum (London), the Royal College of Surgeons, the Ibero-Amerikanisches Institut and the Biblioteca F. Ameghino (Museo de La Plata).

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

The British Journal for the History of Science
  • ISSN: 0007-0874
  • EISSN: 1474-001X
  • URL: /core/journals/british-journal-for-the-history-of-science
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed