Feuillée, Louis

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Feuillée, Louis

(b. Mane, Basses-Alpes, France, 1660; d. Marseilles, France, 18 April 1732)

astronomy, botany.

Feuillée made astronomical observations when he was only ten years old. He was thet order in Avignon on 2 March 1680. In 1699 he accompanied Jacques Cassini on his exploration of the Greek coast and in 1703 went to the Antilles and the South American coast, returning to Brest in 1706. As a result of this mission he was appointed royal mathematician and corresponding member of the Académie des Sciences in Paris.

In 1707 Feuillée sailed for the west coast of South America, via Cape Horn, landing in Chile, where he remained until 1709. He explored the Chilean and Peruvian coasts, returning to Brest by 27 August 1711. Louis XIV placed in his care an observatory built at Marseilles. In 1724 he was again commissioned by the Academy to establish the longitude of the meridian of Hierro Island in the Canaries.

The work of Feuillée is interesting and reliable, although it was marred by his controversy with A. F. Frézier, who explored the west coast of South America between 1711 and 1714. His description of the flora of the coasts of Peru and Chile is still much appreciated.


Feuillée’s astronomical observations were published in the Mémories del’Académie des sciences (1699-1710). His best-known work is the Journal des observations physiques, mathématiques, et botaniques, faites sur les côtes orientales de l’Amérique Méridionale et dans les Indes Occidentales de 1707 à 1712 (Paris, 1714), which was followed by the suite du journal...(Paris, 1725). In the Histoire des plantes médicinales qui son les plus d’usage aux royaumes du Pérou et du Chili (Paris, 1714-1725) he incorporated the description, illustration, and uses of 100 medicinal plants.

Francisco Guerra

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Feuillée, Louis

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