Famous 19th Century Zoologists

Right IconThis ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Vote for Your Favourite 19th Century Zoologists
 1 
Fridtjof Nansen
(Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and the First High Commissioner for Refugees Appointed by the League of Nations)
Fridtjof Nansen
6
Birthdate: October 10, 1861
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Oslo, Norway
Died: May 13, 1930

Fridtjof Nansen was a Norwegian polymath who won the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize in 1922 for his post-war efforts after the First World War. A well-known explorer, humanitarian, and diplomat, Nansen achieved international fame for his attempt to reach the geographical North Pole during his Fram expedition. His techniques and innovations influenced a generation of succeeding Antarctic and Arctic expeditions.

 2 
Ernst Haeckel
(Zoologist & Evolutionist Who Was a Strong Proponent of 'Darwinism')
Ernst Haeckel
8
Birthdate: February 16, 1834
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Potsdam, Germany
Died: August 9, 1919

Ernst Haeckel had initially practiced medicine before he gained an interest in Charles Darwin’s theory and began exploring zoology and related fields. He not only coined terms such as ecology, but also named numerous species and created a genealogical tree. He drew numerous figures of animals and sea creatures, too.

 3 
Georges Cuvier
(French Naturalist and Zoologist Known for Establishing the Field of 'Comparative Anatomy' and 'Paleontology')
Georges Cuvier
4
Birthdate: August 23, 1769
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Doubs, France
Died: May 13, 1832

Georges Cuvier was a French zoologist and naturalist. A major figure in the early 19th century's research of natural sciences, Cuvier played an important role in establishing the fields of comparative paleontology and anatomy by comparing fossils with living animals, for which he is sometimes regarded as the founding father of paleontology.

Recommended Lists:
 4 
Walter Reed
(U.S. Army Physician Who Led a Team Which Confirmed That Yellow Fever Gets Transmitted By a Mosquito)
Walter Reed
6
Birthdate: September 13, 1851
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Belroi
Died: November 22, 1902

Walter Reed was a U.S. Army physician best remembered for leading a team which confirmed that yellow fever gets transmitted by a mosquito rather than by direct contact. His work went a long way in the fight against yellow fever.

 5 
Thomas Hunt Morgan
(Geneticist)
Thomas Hunt Morgan
4
Birthdate: September 25, 1866
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Lexington
Died: December 4, 1945

Thomas Hunt Morgan was an evolutionary biologist, geneticist, and embryologist. He won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1933. He worked extensively on the role that the chromosome plays in heredity and demonstrated that genes are carried on chromosomes. In his later career, he established the division of biology at the California Institute of Technology. 

 6 
Louis Agassiz
(Geologist)
Louis Agassiz
4
Birthdate: May 28, 1807
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Montier
Died: December 14, 1873

Louis Agassiz was a biologist and geologist. He was famous as a scholar of Earth's natural history. Born in Switzerland, he completed his education in Europe and emigrated to USA. He was appointed a professor of zoology and geology at Harvard University. He later founded the Museum of Comparative Zoology at the Lawrence Scientific School.  

 7 
Walter Rothschild, 2nd Baron Rothschild
(British Politician and Zoologist Who Served as a Member of Parliament from Aylesbury)
Walter Rothschild, 2nd Baron Rothschild
4
Birthdate: February 8, 1868
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: England
Died: August 27, 1937

Walter Rothschild, 2nd Baron Rothschild was a British soldier, politician, zoologist, and banker. He is best remembered for his service as the president of the largest Jewish communal organization in the UK, the Board of Deputies of British Jews, between 1925 and 1926. Walter Rothschild also made immense contributions to the field of zoology.

 8 
Élie Metchnikoff
(Former zoologist best known for his pioneering research in immunology)
Élie Metchnikoff
3
Birthdate: May 15, 1845
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ukraine
Died: July 15, 1916
 9 
David Starr Jordan
(Botanist, Peace activist, Zoologist, Autobiographer, Ichthyologist)
David Starr Jordan
3
Birthdate: January 19, 1851
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Gainesville (village), New York
Died: September 19, 1931

Remembered as the first president of the Leland Stanford Junior University, now known as Stanford University, David Starr Jordan was a reputed ichthyologist. An anti-war activist, too, who opposed America’s participation in World War I, he spent his later years as the chief director of the World Peace Foundation.

 10 
Mary J Rathbun
(Zoologist)
Mary J Rathbun
5
Birthdate: June 11, 1860
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Buffalo, New York, United States
Died: April 4, 1943
 11 
Friedrich Ratzel
(Biologist, Geopolitician, Geographer, Zoologist, Political scientist, University teacher)
Friedrich Ratzel
3
Birthdate: August 30, 1844
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Karlsruhe
Died: August 9, 1904

Friedrich Ratzel was a German ethnographer and geographer. He was the first person to use the term Lebensraum, which would later become an important and popular word among the National Socialists. Also an influential writer, Friedrich Ratzel's works served as a justification for imperial expansion. 

 12 
August Weismann
(Biologist, Zoologist, Geneticist)
August Weismann
3
Birthdate: January 17, 1834
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Frankfurt
Died: November 5, 1914
 13 
Pierre-André Latreille
3
Birthdate: November 29, 1762
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Brive-la-Gaillarde, France
Died: February 6, 1833
 14 
Peter Simon Pallas
(German Naturalist Who Explored the Geology of Russia)
Peter Simon Pallas
3
Birthdate: September 22, 1741
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Berlin, Germany
Died: September 8, 1811

German naturalist Peter Simon Pallas was born to a professor of surgery and had, by age 15, formulated classifications of several animal groups. He chiefly worked in and around Russia, and is remembered for his 3-volume geological study, Journey Through Various Provinces of the Russian Empire.

 15 
D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson
3
Birthdate: May 2, 1860
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Edinburgh, Scotland
Died: June 21, 1948

D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson was a Scottish mathematician, biologist, and classics scholar. A pioneer of mathematical biology, Thompson is best remembered for writing a book titled On Growth and Form, which is widely admired by architects, anthropologists, and biologists among others. Over the course of his illustrious career, D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson received several prestigious awards like the Daniel Giraud Elliot Medal.

 16 
Charles Henry Turner
3
Birthdate: February 3, 1867
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
Died: February 14, 1923
 17 
John Lubbock, 1st Baron Avebury
(Anthropologist, Politician, Archaeologist, Prehistorian, Banker, Statistician, Naturalist, Zoologist, Entomologist)
John Lubbock, 1st Baron Avebury
3
Birthdate: April 30, 1834
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London
Died: May 28, 1913

British banker John Lubbock, 1st Baron Avebury, better known as Sir John Lubbock, had also been an MP. However, he is best known for his contribution to ethnography and archaeology. He is also credited with coining the terms Paleolithic and Neolithic, and is known for his books on animal behavior.

 18 
Mathurin Jacques Brisson
3
Birthdate: April 30, 1723
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Fontenay-le-Comte, France
Died: June 23, 1806
 19 
Paul Kammerer
(Biologist)
Paul Kammerer
3
Birthdate: August 17, 1880
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: September 23, 1926
 20 
Bernard Germain de Lacépède
(French Naturalist Known for Continuing Comte de Buffon's Encyclopaedic Collection 'Histoire Naturelle')
Bernard Germain de Lacépède
3
Birthdate: December 26, 1756
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Agen, France
Died: October 6, 1825

French naturalist Bernard Germain de Lacépède is best known for his contribution to fellow French naturalist Comte de Buffon's Histoire Naturelle. He enriched the world’s knowledge of fishes and reptiles. Following the rise of Napoleon, Lacépède joined the French Senate and later became a minister of Bourbon state.

 21 
Edmund Beecher Wilson
(American Zoologist and Geneticist Known for His Researches in Embryology and Cytology)
Edmund Beecher Wilson
5
Birthdate: October 19, 1856
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Geneva, Illinois, United States
Died: March 3, 1939

Edmund Beecher Wilson was an American geneticist and zoologist. He is credited with writing a textbook titled The Cell which is widely regarded as one of the most influential and important books in modern biology. Regarded as America's first cell biologist, Wilson is also credited with discovering the XY sex-determination system which is used to classify several mammals, including humans.

 22 
Christian Gottfried Ehrenberg
(German Scientist & Comparative Anatomist)
Christian Gottfried Ehrenberg
2
Birthdate: April 19, 1795
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Delitzsch, Germany
Died: June 27, 1876

Christian Gottfried Ehrenberg was a German zoologist, naturalist, geologist, microscopist, and comparative anatomist. Regarded as one of the most popular and productive scientists of his generation, Ehrenberg was honored with several prestigious awards including the first Leeuwenhoek Medal in 1877.

 23 
Paul Bert
(French Physiologist Who is Referred to as the 'Father of Aviation Medicine')
Paul Bert
2
Birthdate: October 19, 1833
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Auxerre, France
Died: November 11, 1886

Paul Bert was a French physiologist, zoologist, and politician. Referred to as the Father of Aviation Medicine, Bert is best remembered for his 1878 work La Pression barometrique, which explains the physiological effects of air-pressure. Paul Bert is also credited with describing oxygen toxicity for the first time.

 24 
James Dwight Dana
(US Mineralogist and Geologist Who Conducted Pioneering Research on Volcanoes, Corals, Continents, and Mountains)
James Dwight Dana
2
Birthdate: February 12, 1813
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Utica, New York, United States
Died: April 14, 1895

Copley Medal-winning US geologist and mineralogist James Dwight Dana is remembered for his path-breaking studies on topics such as mountain building, marine life, coral reefs, volcanic activity, and continents. A System of Mineralogy and Manual of Mineralogy are 2 of his iconic works, the latter of which became a standard text.

 25 
Ray Lankester
(British Zoologist and Evolutionary Biologist)
Ray Lankester
2
Birthdate: May 15, 1847
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London, England
Died: August 13, 1929

Ray Lankester was a British zoologist and evolutionary biologist. Lankester held chairs at Oxford University and University College London. He is also remembered for his association with the Natural History Museum, where he served as the third director. Ray Lankester was honored with several prestigious awards, including the Copley Medal.

 26 
Lancelot Hogben
(British Medical Statistician and Zoologist)
Lancelot Hogben
3
Birthdate: December 9, 1895
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Portsmouth, England
Died: August 22, 1975

Lancelot Hogben was a British medical statistician and zoologist. He is best remembered for developing the African clawed frog as a model organism for his biological research. He is also remembered for his work as an author who produced books designed to popularize science and mathematics for the general public. Lancelot Hogben was the recipient of the prestigious Neill Prize.

 27 
Reginald Innes Pocock
(British Zoologist)
Reginald Innes Pocock
2
Birthdate: March 4, 1863
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Clifton, England
Died: August 9, 1947

Reginald Innes Pocock was a British zoologist who started his career at the Natural History Museum as an assistant. During his time at the museum, which lasted 18 years, Pocock developed an interest in ornithology. He also published 200 papers, which earned him recognition as an authority on Myriapoda and Arachnida. Pocock later became the superintendent of the London Zoo.

 28 
Spencer Fullerton Baird
(US Naturalist, Ornithologist, and Zoologist Who Mostly Studied North American Birds and Mammals)
Spencer Fullerton Baird
2
Birthdate: February 3, 1823
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Reading, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: August 19, 1887

American naturalist, ornithologist, and vertebrate zoologist Spencer Fullerton Baird was an expert on North American birds and mammals. Initially a professor of natural history, he was later associated with the Smithsonian Institution as a curator and assistant secretary. He was also instrumental in the establishment of the US Commission of Fish and Fisheries.

 29 
Clinton Hart Merriam
(Father of Mammalogy)
Clinton Hart Merriam
2
Birthdate: December 5, 1855
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: March 19, 1942

Clinton Hart Merriam was an American mammalogist, zoologist, ornithologist, ecologist, entomologist, geographer, ethnographer, physician, and naturalist. Referred to as the father of mammalogy, Merriam owned a private collection of mammal specimens. Clinton Hart Merriam is also credited with co-founding the National Geographic Society and the American Ornithologists' Union.

 30 
Thomas Nuttall
(British Botanist and Zoologist Known for His Discoveries of North American Plants)
Thomas Nuttall
2
Birthdate: January 5, 1786
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Long Preston, England
Died: September 10, 1859

English botanist and naturalist Thomas Nuttal is best known for his popular volume The Genera of North American Plants. He later taught natural history at Harvard and also studied birds, eventually releasing a book on American birds, too. He also undertook a voyage to Columbia River and Hawaii.

Isidore Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire
2
Birthdate: December 16, 1805
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: November 10, 1861
 32 
Thomas Say
(Entomologist)
Thomas Say
2
Birthdate: June 27, 1787
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: October 10, 1834
 33 
Oscar Hertwig
(Zoologist)
Oscar Hertwig
2
Birthdate: April 21, 1849
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Friedberg, Germany
Died: October 25, 1922
 34 
Charles Wyville Thomson
2
Birthdate: March 5, 1830
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Bonsyde, Scotland
Died: March 10, 1882
 35 
Wilhelm Roux
(Zoologist)
Wilhelm Roux
2
Birthdate: June 9, 1850
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Jena, Germany
Died: September 15, 1924
 36 
C. Lloyd Morgan
(British Psychologist and Ethologist Who is Known for His Theory of Emergent Evolution)
C. Lloyd Morgan
2
Birthdate: February 6, 1852
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: London, England
Died: March 6, 1936

C. Lloyd Morgan was a British psychologist and ethologist. He is well-known for his famous theory of emergent evolution. C. Lloyd Morgan is also renowned for his experimental approach to animal psychology, which is now known as Morgan's Canon. Morgan's Canon or the principle or law of parsimony played a key role in the development of behaviourism.

 37 
Peter Wilhelm Lund
(Paleontologist, Zoologist, Archeologist)
Peter Wilhelm Lund
2
Birthdate: June 14, 1801
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Copenhagen, Denmark
Died: May 25, 1880

Peter Wilhelm Lund was a Danish paleontologist, zoologist, and archeologist. He spent most of his life working in Brazil and is considered the father of Brazilian paleontology as well as archaeology. He became the first person to describe dozens of species of pre-historic Pleistocene megafauna and discovered the fossilized remains of human beings among the remains of long-extinct species. 

 38 
Max Schultze
(German Microscopic Anatomist Known for His Discovery of Protoplasm Theory)
Max Schultze
2
Birthdate: March 15, 1825
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany
Died: June 16, 1874

Max Schultze was a German microscopic anatomist best remembered for his work concerning cell theory. He is credited with coining many botanical names and the author abbreviation M.Schultze is generally used to indicate Max Schultze as the author when citing a named coined by him.

 39 
Florentino Ameghino
(Argentine Anthropologist Remembered for His Study on Fossils of the Southern Pampas)
Florentino Ameghino
2
Birthdate: September 18, 1854
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Luján, Argentina
Died: August 6, 1911
Argentine anthropologist Florentino Ameghino is remembered for his research on fossils of the southern Pampas. Born in Sardinia, he moved to Argentina at an early age and soon began his study of fossil classification. He later taught zoology, geology, and mineralogy. His work won him a bronze medal at the Exposition Universelle.
 40 
Agostino Bassi
(Entomologist)
Agostino Bassi
2
Birthdate: September 25, 1773
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Mairago, Italy
Died: February 8, 1856
 41 
Libbie Hyman
(Zoologist)
Libbie Hyman
2
Birthdate: December 6, 1888
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Des Moines, Iowa, United States
Died: August 3, 1969
 42 
Ross Granville Harrison
2
Birthdate: January 13, 1870
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Germantown, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: September 30, 1959
 43 
Kitty Ponse
(She was a professor at the University of Geneva and received the Swiss Otto Naegeli Prize in 1961)
Kitty Ponse
0
Birthdate: September 5, 1897
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Sumatra, Indonesia
Died: February 10, 1982

Otto Naegeli Prize-winning Swiss zoologist and endocrinologist Kitty Ponse was born to Dutch parents in the then-Dutch colony, Sumatra, present-day Indonesia. She moved to Switzerland at 8, and grew up to be a pioneering researcher of sex determination and differentiation in amphibians. She also co-founded the journal Acta Endocrinologica.

 44 
Alexandre Brongniart
(French Mineralogist and Geologist Who First Arranged the Geologic Formations of the Tertiary Period in Chronological Order)
Alexandre Brongniart
2
Birthdate: February 5, 1770
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: October 7, 1847

Best known for exploring the geology of the Tertiary Period, Alexandre Brongniart initially taught natural history and then became a professor of mineralogy. He also worked for the development of porcelain enameling in France. His other works include a classification of reptiles and the introduction of geologic dating.

 45 
Alcide d'Orbigny
(French Paleontologist Known for His Pathbreaking Exploration of South American Natural History)
Alcide d'Orbigny
1
Birthdate: September 6, 1802
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Coueron, France
Died: June 30, 1857

Alcide d'Orbigny is regarded as the founder of micropaleontology. The French paleontologist traveled for 8 years throughout South America, exploring its natural history and geology. His study of marine fossils, sedimentary rocks, and pollen was accompanied by his iconic written work Paléontologie française. He supported the theory of catastrophism.

 46 
Victor Ernest Shelford
1
Birthdate: September 22, 1877
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Chemung, New York, United States
Died: December 27, 1968
 47 
William Henry Flower
(English Museum Curator, Surgeon, and Comparative Anatomist Who was a Leading Authority On Mammals)
William Henry Flower
1
Birthdate: November 30, 1831
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Stratford-upon-Avon, England
Died: July 1, 1899

William Henry Flower was an English museum curator, surgeon, and comparative anatomist. A leading authority on mammals during his time, Flower went on to serve as the director of London's Natural History Museum. Although he is best remembered for his work on the primate brain, William Henry Flower was also an expert on the Cetacea.

 48 
Karl Möbius
(Zoologist)
Karl Möbius
1
Birthdate: February 7, 1825
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Eilenburg, Germany
Died: April 26, 1908
 49 
Alfred Newton
(Ornithologist)
Alfred Newton
2
Birthdate: June 11, 1829
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Geneva, Switzerland
Died: June 7, 1907
 50 
Frank Rattray Lillie
1
Birthdate: June 27, 1870
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Toronto, Canada
Died: November 5, 1947