Louis Vaillant

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Louis Vaillant (full name Louis Auguste André Marie Vaillant)[1] (26 November 1876 – 1963)[2] was a French army doctor, naturalist, and explorer. He was the second son of Léon Louis Vaillant, professor of zoology at the French National Museum of Natural History in Paris.[3]

Louis Vaillant.


He upheld a medical thesis at Bordeaux in 1902 on damage to internal organs caused by snake venom.[4]

Vaillant travelled with Paul Pelliot and the photographer Charles Nouette on Pelliot's archaeological expedition to Eastern ("Chinese") Turkestan, modern Xinjiang, in 1906–1908. He was the expedition's doctor and also naturalist,[3] acting on behalf of the Muséum national d'histoire naturelle; progress was reported in the Bulletin of the museum by his father.[5] This Pelliot–Valliant expedition was a successor to that of Jules-Léon Dutreuil de Rhins and Fernand Grenard of the 1890s.[6]

The expedition left St Petersburg on 17 June 1906 and proceeded via Bokhara, Kashgar, Ürümqi and Turfan, before reaching Peking in the summer of 1909.

In March 1908 the expedition visited Dunhuang, where numerous cave manuscripts were purchased and subsequently studied by Pelliot. The manuscripts are now kept at the National Library of France, the Bibliothèque nationale.

Vaillant served in two military campaigns in Tonkin. He was decorated for military service with the Légion d'honneur on 28 December 1922.[3]


In 1910 Vaillant published an account of the expedition in Bulletins et Mémoires de la Société d'anthropologie de Paris.[7] He later published on the ethnography of the Mong Cai region, now in Vietnam.[8]


  1. ^ Svetlana Gorshenina (2003). Explorateurs en Asie Centrale: voyageurs et aventuriers de Marco Polo à Ella Maillart. Editions Olizane. p. 244. ISBN 978-2-88086-295-4. Retrieved 24 October 2012. 
  2. ^ http://gw.geneanet.org/garric?lang=fr&p=leon+louis&n=vaillant
  3. ^ a b c (French) Bulletin de la Société zoologique de France vol. 39 (1914), pp. 363, 365; archive.org.
  4. ^ Catalogue des thèses de doctorat soutenues devant les universités françaises (1904), column 350; archive.org.
  5. ^ (French) Bulletin du Muséum national d'histoire naturelle vol. 14 (1908), p. 2; archive.org.
  6. ^ Philippe Forêt (2004). La véritable histoire d'une montagne plus grande que l'Himalaya: les résultats scientifiques inattendus d'un voyage au Tibet, 1906-1908, et de la querelle du Transhimalaya (in French). Philippe Foret. p. 64. ISBN 978-2-7495-0346-2. Retrieved 24 October 2012. 
  7. ^ http://www.guimet.fr/fr/publications/autres-ouvrages Bulletins et Mémoires de la Société d'anthropologie de Paris, 1910, Vol. 1, Issue 1, pp. 8-17
  8. ^ Grant Evans; Chris Hutton; Kuah Khun Eng (18 November 2000). Where China Meets Southeast Asia: Social and Cultural Change in the Border Region. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 261. ISBN 978-0-312-23634-2. Retrieved 24 October 2012. 

External links[edit]

  • [1] Downloadable .pdf file of Vaillant's report in Bulletins et Mémoires de la Société d'anthropologie de Paris

See also[edit]

  • Mocquard, M.F. (1910) Voyage de M. le D Louis Vaillant dans l'Asie centrale (Mission Pelliot) Reptiles et batrachiens Bull. Mus. Nat. Hist. Nat. Paris 3:145-153 [2] (nb link does not retrieve - 25.10.2012)