Christophe-Paulin de La Poix de Fréminville

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Christophe-Paulin de La Poix
chevalier de Fréminville
Christophe-Paulin de la Poix de Fréminville.jpg
Portrait of Christophe-Paulin de La Poix de Fréminville
Nickname(s) La Chevalière[1][note 1]
Born (1787-01-24)24 January 1787
Ivry, France
Died 12 January 1848(1848-01-12) (aged 60)
Brest, France
Allegiance France France
Service/branch French navy
Years of service 1801–1831
Rank prince
Battles/wars Raids on Boulogne
Awards
Other work Archeological and natural history works.

Christophe-Paulin de La Poix, chevalier de Fréminville (24 January 1787[2] – 12 January 1848[3]) was a French Navy Commander, naturalist, and archeologist.

Career[edit]

La Poix de Fréminville was born to a family of naval engineers, and joined the Navy in 1801.[2] He served as an aid to Rear-Admiral Latouche-Tréville and distinguished himself on the gunboat Etna during Nelson's Raids on Boulogne.[2]

At the age of 15,[4] Fréminville was appointed to the 74-gun Intrépide as a midshipman[4] and took part in the Saint-Domingue expedition,[2] in which he witnessed and condemned the massacres perpretated by General de Rochambeau.[5]

Returned to France in January 1803 on Swiftsure with Pauline Bonaparte and the body of General Leclerc,[4] he was promoted to Ensign, and distinguished himself again in a battle between his gunboat and a British frigate, where he was wounded.[2]

In 1806, he was appointed to the frigate Sirène on which he took part in a naval division under Captain Amand Leduc, also comprising the frigates Guerrière and Revanche,[6] and sent near the North Pole to prey on British whalers.[2] During the campaign, he served as signals major, adjudant to the division, and hydrographer.[7] He notably rediscovered the island of Enckuysen, which Bellin had placed at 65°N 12°W in maps in 1751 and 1767[3] and whose existence had been doubted, but which were spotted at 65°54'N 12°48'W.[8][note 2]

The frigates sailed up to Spitsbergen, capturing a number of prizes, and returned to Iceland, where Fréminville measured several point of the coast.[3] The squadron then cruised off Ireland and returned to France in September 1807, except Guerrière, captured by HMS Blanche on 19 July 1806.

Seeing little action in the seven following years, Fréminville achieved the rank of Lieutenant only in 1811.[3] A royalist at heart, he welcomed the Bourbon Restoration, but his career did not accelerate; he served on the fluyt Rhône in the Baltic Sea and the frigate Néréide off Western Africa.

In mid-1822, Néréide was in the Caribbean, and Fréminville fell in love with a Creole girl named "Caroline C." at the Îles des Saintes;[4] Néréide was sent to Martinique and then to Guadeloupe meanwhile sailed along the coast of Saintes without stopping with Fréminville aboard. Caroline was misled, thinking that her lover was heading to Europe and would never return, and she committed suicide.[4]

In 1824, Fréminville took command of the fluyt Bonite.[9] The year after, he commanded the fluyt Adour[10] in America.[3] Constantly performing archeology and natural history surveys, he requested in vain command of an exploration mission.[3] It was not until 1827 that he was promoted to Commander.[3] In 1829, Fréminville was appointed to evaluate a chip log invented by Pierre Bouguer, which he deemed unsuitable.[3]

Fréminville retired from the Navy in 1831.[3] The same year, he pseudonymously authored an "Essay on the physical and moral influence of the female costume",[note 3] in which he stated that female clothes

The pseudonym "Caroline de L." that Fréminville used was later interpreted as a hommage to the Creole of the Saintes.[4]

In his later years, he devoted himself to archeology and natural history,[3] and his credited with founding the archeology of Lower Brittany.[4] In 1836, he donated a luxurious model of a fictitious galley, Minerve, made by famed modelist Augustin Pic, to the Musée national de la Marine.[11] He died on 12 January 1848.[3]

Zoological drawings by Fréminville
Shell from the Caribbean 

Honours[edit]

Legacy[edit]

Fréminville is commemorated in the scientific name of a species of Central American snake, Stenorrhina freminvillei.[13]

Works[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "Chevalière" is the French term for "signet ring", but can also be understood as the female form of "chevalier" ("knight").
  2. ^ The island was suppressed from maps in 1854. (Levot, p. 196).
  3. ^ "Essai sur l'influence physique et morale du costume féminin ".
  4. ^ "... agissent délicieusement sur le système nerveux d'un être délicat et lui font éprouver intérieurement des jouissances inconnues à ceux dont l'organisation est plus grossière ".

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mémoires, p.v
  2. ^ a b c d e f Levot, p.195
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Levot, p.197
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h Review of E. Herpin
  5. ^ Mémoires, p.78
  6. ^ Choix de voyages, p.5
  7. ^ Levot, p.196
  8. ^ Voyage to the North Pole, p.80
  9. ^ Fonds Marine, p.593
  10. ^ Fonds Marine, p.595
  11. ^ Maquette de bateau, Minerve, galère ordinaire
  12. ^ a b Antiquités de la Bretagne: monumens du Morbihan, cover page
  13. ^ Beolens et al., p. 94.

Bibliography[edit]

External links[edit]