George Samouelle

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Collecting and Preserving Exotic Insects (1826)

George Samouelle (c. 1790–1846) was a curator in the British Museum (Natural History) of "no real scientific aptitude".[1]

Originally employed as a bookseller for Longman & Co.,[2] Samouelle joined the Natural History Museum at the same time as William Elford Leach.[1] Leach appears to have aided Samouelle greatly, with Bate & Westwood stating "Dr. Leach is the principal authority for Samouelle's work";[1] when Leach left the museum, Samouelle took over his position, but he "seemed incapable of independent work".[1] Twenty years later, in 1840, after neglecting his work, drinking, insulting his superiors, and on one occasion, removing the labels from Adam White's specimens, Samouelle was sacked.[2] He died less than five years later.[2]

Samoulle was primarily interested in Lepidoptera but also wrote A nomenclature of British Entomology, or a catalogue of above 4000 species of the Classes Crustacea, Myriapoda, Spiders, Mites and insects intended as labels for cabinets of Insects, etc., alphabetically arranged. This work established new genera in other insect orders.


  1. ^ a b c d David M. Damkaer (2002). "Interrogating nature". The Copepodologist's Cabinet: A Biographical and Bibliographical History, Volume 1. Memoirs of the American Philosophical Society, Volume 240. American Philosophical Society. pp. 156–174. ISBN 978-0-87169-240-5. 
  2. ^ a b c Michael A. Salmon, Peter Marren & Basil Harley (2000). "George Samouelle (c. 1790–1846)". The Aurelian Legacy: British Butterflies and their Collectors. University of California Press. pp. 137–138. ISBN 978-0-520-22963-1. 

External links[edit]

  • The entomologist's useful compendium; or, An introduction to the knowledge of British insects, comprising the best means of obtaining and preserving them, and a description of the apparatus generally used; together with the genera of Linné by George Samouelle, Associate of the Linnean Society of London London, Printed for T. Boys, 1819. Available at Google Books or Biodiversity Heritage Library.