Grave of Latreille at the Cimitiere du Pere
Lachaise in the eastern part of Paris.
education was partly provincial and partly aristocratic, which
led him to become a priest although he really preferred entomology.
He abandoned the priesthood in his 20s and gradually
established a relationship with the Museum National dHistoire
Naturelle in Paris. During
the French revolution, he was imprisoned in Bordeaux but obtained
his freedom by finding a new species of beetle in his cell and
having it delivered to naturalist friends who succeeded in getting
him released. Sonnini collaborated with him on the Histoire Naturelle Générale et
Particulière des Crustacés et des Insectes (14 volumes,
1802-1805), and Olivier entrusted him with entries in his
Encylcopédie Méthodique Entomologie (1812).
Latreille began to publish on his own, and his masterpiece
was the Genera Crustaceorum
et Insectorum (4 volumes, 1806-1809).
the obituary for Johann Fabricius in 1808.
In November 1814, Latreille succeeded Olivier as Titular
Member of the Académie des Sciences de lInstitut de France
in the Zoology section.
His career was extremely productive during the following
decade as he became fully associated with the Museum National
He was the first to introduce the concept of a family. In 1821, he was made a Chevalier
of the Legion of Honor.
1824. Latreille was often ill.
In order to complete publication of volume 10 of his
Entomologie, he depended on the help of Lepeletier, Serville,
and Guérin-Méneville. During the last three years of
his life, Latreille received formal recognition of his many
presided over the inaugural meeting of the Societé Entomologique
de France, the first of its kind in the world.
After escaping the cholera epidemic of 1832 in Paris,
he returned from the country to his lodgings in the Museum where
he died of bladder disease the following year, on 6 February
Dupuis, C. 1974.
Pierre André Latreille
(1762-1833): the foremost entomologist of his time.
Annual Review of Entomology 1974: 1-13.