Saturday, October 27, 2007

Joachim Barrande


Joachim Barrande's detailed etchings of trilobites were only part of his fixation. His observations of the Lower Paleozoic rocks of Bohemia recorded 10 years of analysis of over 35,000 species of graptolites, brachiopoda, mollusca, trilobites and fishes. An archive of his trilobite etchings is hosted by the Smithsonian Institute, and gives us a glimpse of his obsessive attention to detail.



He was no stranger to controversy, and was philosophically aligned with the catastrophists, and opposed the the ideas of Darwin, who favored a more gradual rate of evolutionary change. In his lifetime he issued more than 25 volumes of work as well as various papers about his discoveries and theories. Barrande died on October 5th, 1883. The Barrandov district of Prague was named in his honour. Take some time to enjoy the work of this near-forgotten master.

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