Date: 03 Sep 2014
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Lalande, Joseph-Jérôme

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Alternate Names

de la Lande, Joseph-Jérôme; Lefrançois de la Lande, Joseph-Jérôme

BornBourg-en-Bresse, (Ain), France, 11 July 1732

DiedParis, France, 4 April 1807

Lalande, Joseph-Jérôme. Reproduced by permission of photographer Simon Dumont (Photograph of statue of Lalande in Paris on Louvre façade, cour Napoléon)

Lalande organized and reduced observations from the 1769 French transit-of-Venus expeditions, prepared a great star catalog and important astronomical bibliography, and taught many astronomers.

Lalande’s father was Pierre Lefrançois, director of a tobacco warehouse, who married Marie-Anne-Gabrielle Monchinet. Their son was educated by the Jesuits at Bourg and then at Lyons. Sent to Paris to study law, he frequented the observatory of Joseph Delisle at the Hôtel de Cluny and attended his lectures and those of Pierre-Charles Le Monnier at the Collège royal (now Collège de France). Then he named himself Lalande. A bachelor, in his 50s he adopted his nephew Michel Lefran ...