Friday, February 20, 2009

Jean-Baptiste Lamarck


May I introduce you to Jean-Baptiste Lamarck (well his real name was: Jean-Baptiste Pierre Antoine de Monet, Chevalier de Lamarck!) whose name, to us Parisians, is pretty familiar because of a Metro station called Lamarck-Caulincourt! I investigated a little more about this guy because of today's photo that I took in Le jardin des plantes - a botanical garden - and I found out that he is believed to be the one who actually came up with the evolution theory first, before Darwin. But that might only be the French being Jealous of the Brits! Anyway, if you want to see for yourself, just check Wikipedia. BTW this statue was made by Léon Fagel at the beginning of the 20th century.

57 comments:

  1. Cool photo Eric and what a coincidence Eric! Here at Insead, the professor talked about Lamark yesterday. Darwin was about natural selection and Lamark about organisms changing according to their environment. The lecture was about how companies should learn to do this better. See! Even in Singapore they follow PDP (7hrs ahead)!

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  2. Oops! LamarCk not Lamark!
    Hey, it looks beau in Paris! But I bet it's still cold!

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  3. Really? I can't believe Lamarck is famous in Singapore really!

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  4. Yes it was very beau in Paris today but it won't last: cold and rain are expected to be back soon...

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  5. You meant to say, "I can't believe PDP is famous in Singapore"

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  6. I love the perspective of this photo.
    Lamarck is really the father of evolutionary theory. When *my* father - an evolutionary biologist - and my mother - also a biologist - came to visit last March we spent the better part of an afternoon photographing them in front of the statues in the gardens. It's true that Lamarck's not as famous as Darwin (who figured out the natural selection part), but he certainly deserves more credit, and my father is always sure to talk about him at length in the courses he teaches!

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  7. Before Darwin?????????? Sacre bleu!
    Non, non non non. Surement pas!
    Or...is that just the Brit jealously guarding her heritage? ;)

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  8. I bow to your father's superior knowledge CraftyRachel! I was only kidding......:)

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  9. No worries Lynn. It seems you've evolved quite nicely...

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  10. lol..Michael... you old flatterer you. Blush.........! giggle.

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  11. Always a bridesmaid, never a bride.

    Too bad about the people who come in second, really! History abounds with them. How about the Vikings discovering America first,Mr. Columbus ?

    Will try to remember Lamarck, especially if I ever wind up on JEOPARDY.

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  12. Je pense, alors j'évolue?

    Well, you have Descartes, after all, so don't feel bad.

    I note the aircraft contrails framing M. Lamarck. It adds visual fun. Let's see, in what directions are those planes flying--to what far away destinations? Hmm, it started out with fabric wings and bi-planes, then EVOLVED into Airbus!

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  13. Hey Michael GF! Yay - what's on your crown? Fish? Apes? A four-legged homosapian? or....the nicely evolved moi, dare I suggest, dangling attractively from your head? Gosh, the mere thought; I think I need a lie down now... ;)

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  14. Way to go, globetrotter Michael!

    I didn't know about Lamarck and its great to learn, once again on PDP.

    Michael, Lynn, and PHX, you're all making me laugh today. Merci! : )

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  15. Hmm - is my name Cari a la Francais??

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  16. Do the French shorten the name Caroline at all??!! I am now officially obsessed with this!

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  17. I don't know. Do they shorten Lynn? LOL. I seem to remember my name being pronounced Leen by the French, whereas it is pronounced Linn in English. I don't mind anything though; to be pronounced in French is good enough for me!

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  18. Lynn - you are quite the rhymer aujourd'hui - hee hee.

    Lamarck is also the name of the "bad guy" in the Ocean's 13 movie. I like to hear Catherine Zeta-Jones say "Lamarck" with her Welsh accent - it sounds very sophisticated. I bet you can do a good one, too - Duchess Leen.

    Hey Carrie - wouldn't they call you "Car-o-leen" en francais? Or remember Carrie Bradshaw in the episode of Sex & the City where she went to Paris? They pronounced it "Carrie" as in Cherie ;)

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  19. I agree Pont Girl, my full name is pronounced "Caro-leen" en francais, but I wonder if its common for the French themselves to shorten their name Caroline (as opposed to someone coming in and saying her name were Carrie) and if so, to what. I'm guessing it would be spelled Cari, but they might have a completely different diminutive - say, Roli!!???!!.

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  20. I also thought immediately of the Ocean's 13 Lamarck!! Fun. : )

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  21. lol Pont Girl I suspect my pronunciation of Lamarck would be quite boringly 'BBC' for you! Not nearly as interesting as Ms. Jones. lol.

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  22. I keep turning back to the same thought - I'm immensely relieved to have a president who "gets" what science is, after long last. Your Lamarck is much to be admired for thinking beyond the boundaries of superstition, much like Galileo.

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  23. Talking of evolution in a girly way, I'm off to bed before I turn into a pumpkin. x

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  24. I guess a monkey swinging from the crown would be appropriate...

    Caroline, your name is shortened to "Caro" in French. Not to be confused with Karo syrup, but I'm sure just as sweet...

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  25. He looks as if he is sitting and thinking. Too bad I believe he thought the wrong way 'round! But a beautiful blue sky today, Eric!

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  26. I just wish we all still wore those lovely cloaks. I think his outfit is splendid. How un-scientific of me.

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  27. France

    First in evolution
    First in revolution

    First in fashion
    First in passion

    First in great cuisine
    First in well-filled jeans

    Eric (and Nicolas) and his countrymen have some things to be proud of.

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  28. Gary, I must confess: I have quite a number of those photos from around Paris. It's sort of a hobby. Ohh, well, forgive me for I have sinned.

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  29. what a long name? i thought only latin girls like myself had long names.....maria de jesus gomez de lizardo (my official name).

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  30. one more thing...i wonder if he is thinking? should i call her carrie or caroline...hmmmmm

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  31. I believe the natural selection part of Darwin's theory real hit it big, or maybe it was ensured that it hits big :)

    But I did learn about Lamarck in my evolution course in school and college.

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  32. Lamarck-Caulaincourt was my old metro stop....

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  33. Maria - funny! I was thinking that he looked like he couldn't figure out how to get down off of the plinth - but now I like your explanation better!

    Michael - thanks! The obsession is cooled. Here in Spanish-speaking SoCal, I am often called Carolina, which gets shortened to Cari, and sometimes to Lina (which I'm fond of) but now I can rest easy that I won't be called Roli when next I come to Paris!! : )

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  34. PS - that was sweet of you to say, too....

    : ) (a smilingly slightly pinker than usual Caro).

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  35. Eric, to me, this guy looks like he's trying to remember something! & his expression is even more obvious when I enlarged the photo, at least to me anyway.
    Congratulations Michael! If your crown has a monkey swinging from it, I can't imagine what mine looked like yesterday!

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  36. Hey everybody ! glad to read comments that show the complementarity between Lamarck and Darwin instead of the vain "who's the first" ! Vive l'Entente cordiale !

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  37. Composition intéressante : Lamarck décalé, posé, en hauteur ; une belle part de ciel lumineux et aérien l'entoure dans ses pensées. Evidemment, c'est un grand humaniste ; la matière est complexe.
    Sans transition : Rachel, les instants de vie que vous publiez sur votre site sont énergisants :)
    Avec les parents que vous avez, ce n'est pas étonnant!!
    Pardon pour mon Français, ici... Je vais essayer d'évoluer un peu jusqu'à la langue anglaise ;)

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  38. That's just fascinating! I'll have to look him up too:)

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  39. Carrie, Pont Girl, Lynn,
    In French, Caroline is more Caro-Lynn (eh eh!), than Caro-Leen. And the shorten version is usually Caro!

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  40. Oups!
    Didn't realize Micheal already mentioned Caro...

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  41. Thib - Merci pour la pronunciation plus exact de mon nom.

    The seemingly-multiplutitudinous-neverendingly-subtlish variations of vocalic nuancing in the French language keep ever frustrating and similarly enticing this consonantaly focused American in her quest to 'get it right'!!!! But, I'll always get this one right (and I'll think of my PDP pals) when I think of it as the combination of Lynn's and my name!

    : )

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  42. French Wikipedia tells me that the other half of the name comes from Armand de Caulaincourt, who was a general and ambassador in Russia between 1807 and 1811, but not why his name and Lamarck's should be paired. (Using the Ocean's 13 theory, it would be because they are one and the same person!)

    Can anyone tell Caro?! : )

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  43. Carrie : Very simple ! they both have their street near this Métro station : "rue Lamarck" and "rue Caulaincourt". So the name of this station makes it clear that it stands at the crossroad of them.

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  44. Ahhh! - Thanks NastyGG. I hadn't thought of that. Just like so many relationships in life, these two are joined forever by circumstances beyond their control!!

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  45. Hmmm, but not the 13th. As a Santa Monican (lots of us Californians here on pdp it seems) who keeps a small pied á terre across the street on rue Buffon, me thinks it is still the 5th (until St. Marcel).

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  46. Peter,
    You're right, the Jardin des Plantes, where Eric took this picture, is in the 5th arrondissement.
    But the métro station "Lamarck-Caulaincourt", on line 12, is in the 18th, north of Paris.

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  47. Well well well… I guess I have new friends… that are wonderful!!!
    By the way where is the link of the pic nic you had?? I like to see it…
    Did someone else speak Spanish too? Muy bien entonces nos reuniremos a hacer un dia de campo en Paris.

    What a name… thanks God I just have 1 name and 2 last names… jajajajajajaja

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  48. Laury, you can see photos of us if you go to yesterday's 19 FÉVRIER 2009 post. At the bottom of what Eric wrote in his caption you can see "LA PDP party photos." Click on that. Or this. We hope to see you in other photos in the future. Maybe you will be eating an ice cream!

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  49. Laury: the links to the picnic video and photo montage are on the 09 Mai 2008 post--see the links under the photo. The same video also is linked on the 21 Mai post.

    Hey, bonne weekend tout le monde. I have to go home and study for my Italian class tomorrow. Yes, since I am such an expert in French (LOL!!!) I decided to try to learn the basics for my trip to Italy in May, which will end in Paris, of course.

    (Let's see, comme si dice ...

    "Buongiorno, signora, lei e bella..."

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  50. Oh, Laury, you were talking about the picnic, here. The video can be seen here, and this is fun. Who's who here.

    Maybe you have already found all this thanks to Jeff.

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