Antoine Gouan

Nov 15, 1733 - Sep 1, 1821

Antoine Gouan was a French naturalist who was a native of Montpellier. Gouan was a pioneer of Linnaean taxonomy in France.
He began his studies in Toulouse, later returning to Montpellier, where he studied medicine at the university. Here he was a student of François Boissier de Sauvages de Lacroix, an ardent supporter of Carl Linnaeus. In August 1752, Gouan received his doctorate under the chairmanship of Antoine Magnol, and subsequently practiced medicine at Saint-Éloi Hospital in Montpellier. Soon afterwards his interest turned to natural history.
In 1762 Gouan published a plant catalog of the botanical garden at Montpellier titled Hortus regius monspeliensis. This publication was the first French botanical work that followed the binomial nomenclature of Linnaeus. In 1765 he penned Flora Monspeliaca, and became titulaire at the Montpellier Academy. During this time period he attained a position at the botanical garden, and was in charge of collection and classification of plant species. In 1770 he published an important ichthyological treatise called Historia Piscicum, a work that expanded the number of fish genera that existed in the Linnaean system.
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