Antoine Laurent de Jussieu
|Died||17 September 1836(aged 88)|
|Known for||Classification of flowering plants|
|Institutions||Jardin des Plantes|
|Author abbrev. (botany)||Juss.|
Antoine Laurent de Jussieu (French pronunciation: [twan lo d? ?ysjø]; 12 April 1748 - 17 September 1836) was a French botanist, notable as the first to publish a natural classification of flowering plants; much of his system remains in use today. His classification was based on an extended unpublished work by his uncle, the botanist Bernard de Jussieu.
In his study of flowering plants, Genera plantarum (1789), Jussieu adopted a methodology based on the use of multiple characters to define groups, an idea derived from naturalist Michel Adanson. This was a significant improvement over the "artificial" system of Linnaeus, whose most popular work classified plants into classes and orders based on the number of stamens and pistils. Jussieu did keep Linnaeus' binomial nomenclature, resulting in a work that was far-reaching in its impact; many of the present-day plant families are still attributed to Jussieu. Morton's 1981 History of botanical science counts 76 of Jussieu's families conserved in the ICBN, versus just 11 for Linnaeus, for instance. Writing of the natural system, Sydney Howard Vines remarked
"The glory of this crowning achievement belongs to Jussieu: he was the capable man who appeared precisely at the psychological moment, and it is the men that so appear who have made, and will continue to make, all the great generalisations of science."
The system of suprageneric nomenclature in botany is officially dated to 4 Aug 1789 with the publication of the Genera Plantarum (Gen. Pl.).