André Marie Constant Duméril

André Marie Constant Duméril (January 1, 1774 – August 14, 1860) was a French zoologist. He was professor of anatomy at the Muséum national d'histoire naturelle from 1801 to 1812, when he became professor of herpetology and ichthyology. His son Auguste Duméril was also a zoologist.

André Marie Constant Duméril
André Marie Constant Duméril
André Marie Constant Duméril
Born1 January 1774
Died14 August 1860 (aged 86)
Scientific career
InstitutionsMuséum national d'histoire naturelle


André Marie Constant Duméril was born on January 1, 1774 in Amiens and died on August 14, 1860 in Paris.

He became a doctor at a young age, obtaining, at 19 years, the “prévot” of anatomy at the Medical school of Rouen. In 1800, he left for Paris and collaborated in the drafting of the comparative anatomy lessons of Georges Cuvier.

He replaced Cuvier at the Central School of the Panthéon and had, as his colleague, Alexandre Brongniart. In 1801, he gave courses to the Medical school of Paris. Under the Restauration he was elected a member of the Académie des Sciences (French Academy of Sciences) and after 1803 succeeded Lacépède, who was occupied by his political offices, as professor of herpetology and ichthyology at the Muséum national d'histoire naturelle. But Duméril only officially received this chair in 1825, after the death of Lacépède.

He published his Zoologie analytique in 1806. This covered the whole of the animal kingdom and shows the relations between genera as then distinguished, but not among species. In 1832, Gabriel Bibron (1806–1848), who became his assistant, was given the task of describing the species for an expanded version of Zoologie analytique, while Nicolaus Michael Oppel (1782–1820) assisted him with a revised higher-order systematics. After the death of Bibron, he was replaced by Auguste Duméril, André’s son. However, Bibron's death delayed the publication of the new work for ten years. In 1851, the two Dumérils, father and son, published the Catalogue méthodique de la collection des reptiles (although Auguste was apparently the true author) and in 1853, André Duméril alone published Prodrome de la classification des reptiles ophidiens. This last book proposes a classification of all the snakes in seven volumes.

It was Duméril who, discovering a case of preserved fishes in the attic of the house of Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon, finally described the species which had been collected by Philibert Commerson nearly 70 years earlier.

He then published a very important work, l’Erpétologie générale ou Histoire naturelle complète des reptiles (nine volumes, 1834–1854). In this, 1,393 species are described in detail and their anatomy, physiology and bibliography are specified. It should however be noted that Duméril maintained the amphibians among the reptiles in spite of the work of Alexandre Brongniart or Pierre André Latreille or the anatomical discoveries of Karl Ernst von Baer (1792–1876) and Johannes Peter Müller (1801–1858).

He was interested all his life in the insects and published several memoirs on entomology. His principal entomological work is Entomologie analytique (1860, two volumes). With his son Auguste Duméril, also a zoologist, he created the first vivarium for reptiles of the Jardin des Plantes. Duméril always considered observations on animal behaviour of taxonomic significance.

After 1853, he began to cede his position to his son and he retired completely in 1857. He was made a commander of the Legion of Honour two months before his death.

Species named after A.M.C. Duméril

See also


  • Le Floch-Prigent, P (Dec 2008). "Constant Duméril (1774–1860) anatomist doctor and naturalist, about a portrait by G. Devers". Morphologie : bulletin de l'Association des anatomistes. France. 92 (299): 199–203. doi:10.1016/j.morpho.2008.08.003. ISSN 1286-0115. PMID 18951057.
  • Translated from French Wikipedia.
  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Beolens, Bo; Watkins, Michael; Grayson, Michael (2011). The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. xiii + 296 pp. ISBN 978-1-4214-0135-5. ("Duméril", p. 77).

External links

African forest turtle

The African forest turtle (Pelusios gabonensis) is a species of turtle in the family Pelomedusidae. It is endemic to Africa, where it can be found in Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Republic of the Congo, Ghana, Tanzania, and Uganda


Amphiglossus is a genus of skinks, lizards in the family Scincidae.

Brachymeles bonitae

Brachymeles bonitae, commonly known as Hikida's short-legged skink or the stub-limbed burrowing skink, is a species of skink found in the Philippines. It was first described in 1839 by André Marie Constant Duméril and Gabriel Bibron. It is endemic to the Philippines.

Cricket frog

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Cricket frogs are able to communicate and attract each other using a specific frequency of their mating call, but it can only be heard by members of the same population. Cricket frogs from other locales are unable to aurally process the new frequency, causing for a genetic differentiation among the species.


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Hemitheconyx is a genus of gecko. Both species are found in Africa. They are known as fat-tailed geckos.


Homopus is a genus of tiny tortoises in the family Testudinidae, endemic to southern Africa. Three species have been moved to the genus Chersobius.


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Phyllobates contains the most poisonous species of frog, the golden poison frog (P. terribilis). They are typical of the poison dart frogs, in that all species have bright warning coloration (aposematism), and have varying degrees of toxicity. Only species of Phyllobates are used by natives of South American tribes as sources of poison for their hunting darts. The most toxic of the many poisonous alkaloids these frogs emit from their skins is batrachotoxin, alongside a wide variety of other toxic compounds.


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Tomodon dorsatus A.M.C. Duméril, Bibron & A.H.A. Duméril, 1854

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Tomodon orestes Harvey & Muñoz, 2004


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